How to Set a Smart Toddler Schedule

How to set a toddler schedule

Toddlers are known for being testy. While they learn the ways of the world around them, they are constantly learning and exploring, experiencing new things, and processing everything that they are taking in. In addition to learning how to communicate effectively, as well as understand others, a lot of this can be overwhelming for both the child and the parent, which can make getting anything done a challenge.

When it comes to setting up a daily schedule, it helps to stick to a routine, but allow yourself some wiggle room.

Make a List

Knowing what you need to get done is key, but how you will go about doing that may change. Keeping a list can help you stay organized and on-task even when things run a little later than intended or other things come up. When it comes to basic everyday essentials like breakfast, bath time, bed time etc., it helps to have a routine and stick to it. Routines help toddlers adjust to certain tasks, but sticking to them too much without much deviation can be tricky for you and sometimes bothersome for kids, especially if they aren’t sure what to expect or were expecting something else. In either case, routine activities should adhere to the same general rules every day, and all other activities and tasks can be scheduled around them. That way, if something doesn’t go according to plan, you still have the bare essentials down so you can stay on top of things and your toddler can rest easy.

Prioritizing Preparation

With toddlers, it helps to be ready for anything. With kids, it can be hard not to find a single stretch of time, whether it be in the morning before breakfast or right after dinner, where it makes sense to try and get everything done at once. It may make sense at first, but this can conflict with a toddler’s need for structure. Skipping a certain activity, especially if it is one that is part of your regular routine, it helps to have some alternatives in your back pocket to prevent any crankiness. Keep a diaper bag or other purse with some backup snacks, toys, and other tools that can help you in a pinch when you really need to get something done.

Be Flexible

It’s hard to balance structure and routine with being busy and unpredictability, and it can be even more challenging when a toddler is thrown into the mix. If something needs to be changed, rescheduled, or forgotten all together, you want to know that your child will be able to handle it. Routine is good for kids, but they shouldn’t grow too reliant on it either. Teaching them to be adaptable is important, so in between routine play times, snack times, and errands, make sure you add some variety to your daily routine whether it involves scheduling a playdate, going to a different park, or even alternating certain activities on different days.

Minimizing Melt-Downs

Sometimes, things come up and they can’t be ignored. Whether it’s a family emergency or a surprise visit from relatives, the change in routine can be difficult for your child to process if they are still very young. Providing some kind of set schedule and routine can help give kids a sense of normalcy, but it can also be harmful too. This is why no matter what happens, whether it is a an emergency or a small change of plans, it helps to sit down and talk with your child. They may not understand why things need to change and may feel uncomfortable as a result, but providing them with an explanation and some reassurance that things will be fine or certain things can be done later will help instill them with a sense of calm.

Remember, scheduling with a toddler can be difficult. Keep some basic building blocks in mind when it comes to routine, but keep things open, flexible and subject to change if need be. The everyday routine of some activities can give kids the balance and stability they need, but the exposure to the unexpected will help them in the present as well as later in life.

Ways to Boost Your Child’s Confidence

Boosting Your Toddler's Confidence

It’s important that children feel comfortable in their own skin and confident in their abilities. When parents help kids build their sense of self-esteem, it is important to be careful, especially since an overconfident kid can handle things like failure and rejection poorly. There needs to be a balance, and kids need to understand that it is okay to make mistakes, as long as you learn from them. There are a few things that parents can do to help their young one feel and be more confident in a healthy way.

Considering Compliments

Showering your child in accolades can be dangerous, especially if you overexaggerate or give out compliments on a constant basis. Complimenting your child can be validating, but when done too much or without any real feeling behind it, kids can grow up to think they can do no wrong. This can be especially troublesome when it comes to things like grades, academic accomplishments, sports, and even social interactions with their peers. Instead of saying things like “That’s the best drawing I’ve ever seen!” or something along those lines, you can point out specific strengths such as their coloring skills. It is also important to remember that not everything deserves praise, especially things that kids are supposed to do. If your child does their chores and homework on time or finishes their vegetables at dinner, a simple “Thank you” will suffice, otherwise they may start filtering out your compliments or develop an overinflated ego for doing things everyone should be expected to do.

Don’t Rescue Them

When kids make mistakes or face obstacles, there are some instances where a parent should help and when they should take the back seat. Your child should learn to handle certain situations on their own and to develop problem-solving skills. If they are used to mommy or daddy always coming to the rescue, they may not develop the necessary skills they need to deal with problems and may end up relying on you for everything, even as they get older. It is important to instill a sense of accountability and ability, both characteristics which can lead to a stronger sense of self while boosting confidence at the same time.

Let Them Make the Decisions

Leaving certain decisions up to your child also helps reduce their dependency on what mommy and daddy say, allowing them to develop opinions, thoughts, and a unique way of approaching certain situations. There is a lot more to be learned when kids are allowed to make decisions for themselves, granted they are age-appropriate, and can help them develop a firm sense of identity as they continue to get older. Simple decisions that kids can make can include what they wear that day and what they have for a snack. Kids don’t have to come up with a solution from scratch, either. Present them with several options to choose from so you still have some control over what they choose (i.e. not leaving the door open for them to decide they want dessert for dinner).

How Reading More Can Make Kids Kinder

Child reading educational books

Reading has been linked to many successes, and for the most part is often discussed in relation to a child’s academic success. Related reading skills, like writing and comprehension, can help kids better understand new ideas, abstract concepts, and retain information. When it comes to personal growth, reading can broaden a child’s mind, expose them to new perspectives, and give them insight to others’ experiences in a unique way.


Reading can be an exploratory experience. Even if you’re sitting and reading a book in your own home, the words on the pages of the book can transport you anywhere in the world. For kids, being exposed to other cultures, ideas, and kinds of people can be incredibly beneficial for their developing minds. Learning about other parts of the world and the people that live there can be educational, but it can also be informative in a different way. People in different parts of the world may have different kinds of daily struggles, ways of life, and modes of thinking and speaking, and learning about these things can be important for people of all ages, especially children. Understanding different kinds of people opens doors to greater tolerance and understanding, and also helps kids understand that despite many things, different people can also be similar as well.


Reading a book from someone else’s perspective, whether it be fiction or nonfiction, can help kids understand how other people feel and better understand others’ emotions. This can translate to interpersonal interactions easily, making it much more natural for kids to sympathize and empathize with others, understand where they may be coming from, or what they may be going through.


Understanding emotions can also help kids become better at communicating their own thoughts and feelings, too. A better understanding of emotion, and the thought processes behind it, can help kids see themselves in others and have a better idea of how to handle delicate situations. Expressing oneself is just as important as understanding other people’s emotions, and when kids have a more thorough understanding of these things, it makes it easier for them to know how to comfort others and recognize situations in which they can help someone else.

Kindness often comes from a place of understanding and seeing situations for what they are, even if it is from a different perspective. The more kids understand about other people, cultures, and situations different from their own, the more tolerant, caring and compassionate they can be as they grow into fully fledged adults.