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The most nerve-wracking thing (to me) about starting kindergarten is the 8am start time - Page 2

post #21 of 41
I can relate. DS is in kindergarten this year, but he's a "late bird," so his class starts at 9:30. I'm a little nervous for next year when he'll have to start at 8am. When I think about it, though, although I enjoy our long mornings at home, I could very easily make it out the door by 7:45 if I had to. The night before, I could lay out the kids' clothes, make or at least mentally plan DS's school snack, and make sure all his homework/permission slips/etc. are completed and in his backpack. Then in the morning I could do quick breakfasts like egg burritos, oatmeal, smoothies, or cold cereal.

I already make sure I'm showered and ready by the time the kids get up so that I can be focused on getting them ready once they're up -- we'd be fine leaving the house within half an hour of them waking up if they skipped the whole laying-on-the-couch-in-jammies phase of the morning. In fact, many mornings we're out for a walk or at the grocery store by 8am, and on those days I always reassure myself that, "See? It can be done, and next year will be fine." And next year will be fine for you too.
post #22 of 41
DS is in Kindergarten this year. School bell rings at 7:45 and anything later than that is officially tardy. DS is in bed between 8-8:30 and usually asleep shortly after that. I wake up at 6:30, wake ds at 7:00 and get him dressed. We go downstairs where I make him a quick breakfast (he wants the same thing every single morning... he's a kid for routine!). Lunches are packed the night before so I just put it in his backpack, he gets his shoes on and we're out the door by 7:15. He eats his breakfast in the car (his choice, he eats much better that way in the morning). We get to his school around 7:30 and I walk him upstairs to his room to put his stuff away, then we go to the library and he reads me a book. He's usually in his classroom between 7:45 and 7:55 (his teacher doesn't mind and he's not marked tardy). I'm at work (Mon/Wed/Fri) or my school (Tues/Thurs) by 8:00 (8:05 at the latest). DS's school ends at 2:35.

I thought it would be bad, starting this early, but ds has adjusted very well. If I try to wake him, we get nowhere. I have to physically pick him up out of bed, lay him on the floor and take pj's off and put his clothes on then carry him downstairs. If I don't, he'd just fall asleep wherever he is. LOL!
post #23 of 41
Well, you'll just have to adjust. I agree with the PP who suggested starting the bedtime routine now vs. later.
My son's school starts at 8:06 (wierd time, I know) and he usually gets there around 8:05 , so not techically late. He goes to bed at 8, unless we have a practice or late ball game. He has always been an early riser, he usually wakes me up around 6:30- 7. I do cook breakfast every morning, lay his clothes out, and put the toothpaste on his toothbrush for him. It usually takes an hour to get ready, although if we really had to, we could do it in 30 min. It does help that we live 2 mintues from school. Ideally, we would be walking, but we haven't been ready in time yet.
You'll be fine, you may have to make some minor adjustments, but it will all work out.
He does eat school lunch, but I do pack an afternoon snack, which only takes a couple of mintues.
post #24 of 41
School starts at 7:50 here. While I do have "chipper happy morning kid" I prefer morning kindy by a mile. By 11 a.m. it's all done and we have the day to do whatever. My friends that have afternoon kindy (11:30 to 2:40) have to kind of sit around all morning waiting for school to start and it makes it difficult to plan anything else. Evenings are definitely routine-oriented and it's very easy to get DS to bed and settle in. Most nights he's already dozed off before we're done reading books. I notice a big difference the morning if we've been a bit more loose about our evening routine and he goes to bed closer to 9 than 8 - he's cranky, sensitive, can't make any decisions, etc. Clothes, shoes and backpack are laid out the night before. Breakfast is one of 2 or 3 choices that I can easily make in about 10 minutes (scrambled eggs, sausage links, or even a quick sandwich are all fast, filling options).
post #25 of 41
We start school at 8:30, and its half an hour away so we have to leave by 8am. We are NOT morning people- never have been, never will be- and therefore my son IS the perpetual late comer. This is not something we are proud of, as we are constantly working to do better- the last few weeks have been running smoothly as I have made some changes that have helped a lot.

First off, I try really hard to have kids asleep by 9pm- we instituted a bedtime routine that starts at 8pm so they are out by 9. I wake my son up for school at 7:30, so he gets over 10 hours of sleep which is perfect for him.

I make quick and healthy breakfasts such as frozen organic waffles with fruit and yogurt, instant oatmeal with agave and ground-up nuts, sometimes a bowl of healthy cereal with almond milk, smoothies, and if we're really in a rush a bagel with peanut butter for the car.

I get clothes out and make lunches the night before, if possible. We've got the routine down pat so it takes exactly 40 minutes, and we're only late if we don't wake up on time. It's not so bad once you get used to it, but I still enjoy weekends and vacations when I don't have to jump out of bed and start running around like e crazy woman. I miss the carefree days of having little kids and nowhere to be until later in the day!

Jessica, Mom of Three
DS #1 (age 7)
DS #2 (age 4)
DD due soon!!
post #26 of 41
Our kindergarten kids have to be in their seats by 740 I believe it is. My son is still in preschool and has to be there at 8--we are usually there at 759 The idea of ME having to get up even earlier is not appealing and my oldest is grouchy when I have to wake him but I do it anyway. Bedtime on school days in 730 and I try to wear them out afterschool so that they do go to bed. Like today they went outside at 530 after dinner and jumped on the trampoline, rode bikes and swam in the kiddie pool. Came in at 715, took baths, had a quick snack, read a quick book, and were all in bed by 745, everyone fell asleep immediately(within 10 mins). Along with laying out uniforms, preparing lunches as much as I can the night before really help us get out the door a lot quicker.
post #27 of 41
Kindy here runs 8:20 - 1:35. Call it a 3/4 day. We're often lucky to make it out of the house as early as 8:30 for her preschool. (Opens at 7:30; bell rings for a little classroom time at 9:00).

However, dd's preschool is a five minute walk from us, and the elementary school only a few blocks further. So this summer, we're going to practice. We'll get dd invested in the process, try to work out some strategies with her (morning and evening), and just figure out what we have to do to get to school by 8:20. On weekends, we can time the walk to kindergarten--they have a great playground, so it'll just be like a walk to the park.

What I have to figure out is afterschool childcare, because I work. It's university, so I have some flexibility in scheduling classes, but I don't think I have enough flex to cut off my workday at 1:00....
post #28 of 41
An 8:00 start time was 40 minutes later than we'd been leaving the house for daycare, so it was no problem for us.

It takes half an hour tops (usually more like 25 minutes) for my kids to be ready in the morning. I agree with all the other posters, get organized the night before and simplify where possible.
post #29 of 41
Wow, you all have early start times! Our public elementary starts at 9:25! That does seem late to me, but it's pretty typical in our district.

I agree that 8:00 seems early, and it looks like you got lots of good advice!
post #30 of 41
I just wanted to pipe in and say you are not alone!!! My ds won't start K until 2011 but I am ALREADY stressed over it. My kids naturally get up around 6 AM but even then, getting everyone washed, dressed, fed, pottied and out the door by 7:45 seems totally crazy to me. At this point if it is a good day we are ready to go by around 8:30 or 9. I admit that we do a lot of lazing around though--they watch TV while I drink my coffee and feed the baby, etc. I normally cook breakfast: oatmeal and fruit, eggs and bacon, french toast, etc. I don't want to give that up since I think he will need a full belly even more than he did before! Lots of good tips on this thread, I will be keeping an eye on it so I can figure out our own game plan!
post #31 of 41
Before we started homeschooling 7:45 was when he had to be in his classroom.

6:50 if we wanted to get him on the bus, and for a time we did not have a car we could drive, so 6:50 it was.

You're going to have to simplify and stream line. If you want them to have a hot breakfast, you'll have to get up and get moving sooner.

They can dress themselves, quickly, just set the habit of laying things out te night before. You could even have a "pile for the week" or in baskets, whatever.

For us breakfast was usually oatmeal, sometimes cereal, and if we ever had a 'big breakfast' for dinner, I re-heated some for breakfast. Lunch was pretty much always the same. PB&J (when it was me making my lunches I would toast and butter a bagel the night before since I don't like pb&j, and always worry that mayo or meat will go bad between walking out the door and lunch time) a piece of fruit, some kind of veggie, and pretzles or some other kind of snack cracker. I sent water with him, and would give him change for milk. It's not perfect but it works.

Set alarms, time for you to get up, the kids, when breakfast needs to be on the table/off the table, and time to go. You'll get it down to a science before you know it.

That doesn't mean that there won't be days that you don't wake up until you should be leaving!! But you should be able to get your kids to school on time more often than not! (it was always fun waking up at 6:50 as the bus is backing out of your street, when you have to run a van that might not make it back to the house, if it makes it the 2.3 miles to the school.!!!0
post #32 of 41
We (hopefully) start K next Fall.

First bell will be at 7:45 and class starts at 7:52.

Bus pick up will be between 7:20 & 7:30. Yikes- and we ARE morning people, just not that early.

Mine will do 1/2 day K and they have an early bedtime. We may have to move it earlier for the first few weeks as they adjust.

I second PP advice:

make breakfast ahead, lay out clothes, etc. You can even do breakfast at school (our offers hot healthy choices of oatmeal/eggs/etc as well as milk/cereal).

What we do is have a night light turn on in the room at wake-up time (6:30) and then the kids usually wake up naturally within the half hour due to the bit of light. That way I am not waking them, but we still get moving pretty early.

Contact your school and check the 'late' policy. Ours can call a truancy officer if you have X amount of late mornings or absences and it can actually be taken to court---though 99% of the time they simply send 'reminder' letters to get kids to school on time and help write up a plan to improve the problem. It sounds harsh and sort of is, but the schools have to report tardies/absences and it can affect state funding on how many kids they have 'in class' on certain days (count days). Also chronically late kids can miss important information first thing in the morning and/or part of the instructional time.

Now their bio rhythms are pretty set to this and they wake/sleep about the same time everyday.
post #33 of 41
This was one of the factors which led us to homeschool. Dh works from home, and works best in the evening/late night. So trying to adjust the girls' and my schedules to accomodate getting dd1 to K by 8am every day (and dd1 essentially never seeing her dad except the weekend, since she'd be tired and off to bed so early at night every night) was something I really worried about. Our schedules have been based on dh's forever, and that would have been a rough transition (both girls are night owls like us).

I think (KNOW) that we had family and friends really relishing the fact that we were going to have to start keeping "regular" hours once dd1 started school.

But, given how much we travel, the school's rigid and inflexible attendance policy, etc., homeschooling came to make more and more sense. We are in a 'virtual school' and love it.
post #34 of 41

it's the early morning i don't like!

lately, i've had to take my 4-year-old son to school (KG starts at age 4 here.) i am not a morning person so we get up around 7:15 a.m. or so. we get dressed (today i got up before 7 so i could have a shower b/c my youngest DS was still sleeping so i had the chance) as soon as we get up. daddy makes DS's lunch before he goes to work, i pick out DS's clothes the night before, and DS has something to eat when we get downstairs while i get my younger son ready to go and into the buggy. around 7:40 or 7:45, i tell DS1 to get his shoes and coat on and away we go. we leave the house by 7:45 or 7:50 so he can get to school before their 8:15 start time. generally we get there around 8:05 or 8:10; it's about a 1k walk. luckily, DS isn't a dawdler so we get all of this accomplished very easily.
btw, he's at a catholic school. the public school is double-bussed with them so we got the short end of the stick and the public school starts after 9. darnit!!
post #35 of 41
I too was horrified by the 8am starting time for kindy. Suffice it to say that both dh and I (esp me) are REALLY REALLY not morning people (REALLY).

Forgive me if I repeat what someone else has said (I didn't read the other posts), but... Some things that have helped us are: having lunch made the night before, dressing dd in school clothes the night before (I do this if dh is out of town and it's just me in the morning), having breakfast planned and keeping it simple (and something dd will like so she'll eat it up quickly) OR eat breakfast (bagel and creamcheese or the like) in the car, have book bag packed and ready to go by the door, in winter have all outside clothes (snowsuit, hat, gloves, etc) ready to go by the door), and multi-task (brush dd's hair and put it in a ponytail while she's sitting eating breakfast, etc).

I can (honest to god) go from dd asleep in bed to out the door in 15 mins. Of course it is much more pleasant if I allow at least half an hour. The alarm is set at 7 and we leave at 7:30 (I say "we" but I have to set the record straight that it is usually dh who takes dd to school )
post #36 of 41
Preschool for the boys starts at 8am. We get them up at 7am, go potty get dressed, five minutes for this unless someone's got the runs-in which case they aren't going to school anyway. Breakfast-bowl of cereal, organic cereal bar, or bagel with cream cheese or jam. No fancy stuff here-there's no time. Every once and a while DH will get up extra early and bring back some donuts from around the corner, but otherwise its gotta be simple and quick. No long commute here, thank goodness but gotta be out the door by 7:40am.

I JUST found out that the kindergarten our kids will attend, and that our oldest might start at in the fall starts at 9am. Kudos to our district for having a HUMANE start time for young people! You can make it work-believe me. Set that timer on your coffee pot the night before. When you get up, there it is-hot and ready.
post #37 of 41
You could move here. My kids don't start school until 11. And the best part? We can do that schedule until 8th grade.
post #38 of 41
I really like our early morning start, they end at 2:30, so I get to spend a fair bit of time with them before bedtime.
Please try not to be late! I am on "late slip" duty every two weeks, and it's the same kids coming in late all the time. Some don't care, but others seem embarrassed by it, even though by and large it's not their fault, it's the parent's fault! All the volunteers are friendly about it, but the kids still get that they're late.

You've gotten lots of good tips, here are a few extras;
- have a timer that goes off 5 minutes before it's time to leave? We've never done that, but a friend of mine does, but with music.
- Easy clothes to put on - my kids lived in sweats in kindergarten.
- If driving, we have audio books to listen to in the car, so they look forward to the next installment & getting in the car

I always try to cuddle with my kids the first 5 minutes after they get up, I find that little bit of connections starts the day off well.
post #39 of 41
When I was a kid, we were ALWAYS late to school. It was mostly my mom's fault. She was so slow in the morning to wake up, to decide what she was going to wear, to put her make up on, etc. I hated it! As an adult, I also have lateness issues - inherited, modeled, whatever - so I do what I can to prevent it.

1. ALWAYS give yourself 15 minutes more than you think you'll need. Part of my problem is that I almost always underestimate how long it will take me to do anything. Especially now that I have kids.
2. Do as much as you can the night before. My kids are at home and in preschool, and I already pick out their clothes (and mine!) the night before, get cloth diapers/supplies ready to go, etc.
3. Clean the kitchen the night before. Many mornings I have derailed myself by waking up to a dirty kitchen (ok, by this I mean a sink of dirty dishes) and
then feeling like I have to clean it before I can do anything else.

Good luck!
post #40 of 41
I'm worried too! K starts at 8 am. Usually, we all stay up late, DD has pre K this year 3 days a week that starts at 9:30. It is really tough and we have to make sure that on school nights she gets to bed by 10. I don't wake her up till 8:45. Somehow this summer I have to work on getting her schedule reset so that she goes to bed earlier!
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