Want A Successful Morning Routine? Build a command center in these 5 easy steps.
Find a space in your home that your family already uses to dump things like shoes, keys, backpacks, schoolwork or jackets. THIS is your command center. You don’t want to make your command center too confusing or try to re-establish a new location that everyone will ultimately forget and not use.
Begin adding your sections to your command center. You will need 8 primary functions: monthly calendar, to-do list, schedule, house rules, catch-all for both adults and kids, message board, contact information, listed deadlines and events. These are your must have basics; if you have other specific things you want to add then organize them into your space naturally.
Organize your space by creating sections that are like-minded. Shoes go on the floor, jackets go in a closet or on hooks. Backpacks can go in a cubby or on a hook. Get the big stuff taken care of first. Once your large items are organized then make space for your visual command center. I personally like to use paper and tape to arrange my sections so that I know where it all goes before I hammer in nails or put in screws. TIP: Make sure you are considering everyone’s height. If the adults are tall, don’t make writable space too low or they won’t be used. In comparison, to ensure your kid, tween or teen spaces are fully optimized for their school and home needs.
Create a set of rules. Yes, rules. This can be hand written, typed, decorated or plane. These are in place not only so everyone knows what is expected, but also as a visual reminder that your are all a TEAM. A team works together, a team strives to assist making the team more productive, happy and successful. Whatever your rules are you want to make sure that they are widely agreed upon by the whole family. My family has a ‘rules’ section that we call ‘Our Philosophy’ and it sets a tone to each day as we go past them. My kids like it when I read the list and as a parent I’m reminded by just seeing it as I walk by.
Create a timeline for everyone to gradually implement the system and allow for alterations. Try not to get upset if its ignored or only partially used at first. New things take time. Also, make sure everyone knows that this command center is for everyone and they are all able and encouraged to help make it better. That being said allow for suggestions and changes. Perhaps your kiddo comes up with a concern or idea you never would have thought of. That is perfect. OR maybe your partner wants a bucket instead of a try; great implement the change and watch how everyone starts using the system.
Here are a few more pictures of our home command center.
We use the kitchen. Right at the door we have our jacket, backpack and shoe drop,
but everything else goes to our kitchen.
This is our school drop and storage area.
It keeps anything that is being worked as well as the weekly session and learning plans.
Here is Our Philosophy! I made it with stickers on a white canvas and it sits in our main play / family room so that everyone can see it on a daily basis.
I like to read it to our kids periodically to get them in the routine of not only looking at it, but thinking about what it all means.