Hard to Get Moving?
In our house, mornings usually go one of two ways:
- The kids are up early and chasing each other around the house, bursting with energy
- I have to wake the kids up and push and prod them to get ready in time to make it to school
I have found (after much experimenting) that walking into a sleeping kids room and trying to get them to jump out of bed is an exercise in futility.
We've tried making it a competition to see who can get ready the fastest. Bomb. We've tried setting clothes out the night before to speed things up. Bomb. We're tried nagging the boys to move faster…that's miserable for everyone involved!
So one morning, out of sheer desperation, I tried using my phone to play songs (on YouTube) that I know my kids love moving and singing to. I didn't blare it at them, but I did gradually increase the volume over time to get them moving. So here's how it went down:
- Walk into the bedroom
- Say good morning
- Open the window curtains and blinds to make the room brighter
- Turn off their fan (they sleep with a fan blowing to drown out outside noise)
- Turn on music (I just do it on my phone using YouTube videos)
- Say good morning again and encourage them to sit up, move around, etc
- Start singing and dancing to the music (this made them laugh and start moving around more)
- Kids start getting up and getting dressed. They even made their beds without complaint!
- Turn the music up a little more, everyone starts dancing and laughing
I've tried it many times since then with great success! I've played different songs, and the boys have also started requesting songs.
The Unintended Benefit
I started this experiment with the goal of getting the kids to move more quickly. I didn't really expect it to completely improve their mood.
By the way, if you need some additional help in creating an effective morning routine, check out Sarah's tips and ideas!
When I began playing the music, the crabby morning attitudes and complaining about going to school didn't make an appearance. They are happier and fight with each other (and me) much less. All in all, they start the day on a much better foot!
Pro Tip: You know your family the best. If you or your kids really need a quiet environment as they wake up, or they need to wake up more slowly, take my experience with a grain of salt. This method might not work for everyone. On the other hand, if you think it has even the slightest chance of working, it's worth a shot!
I have included a list of some of the songs that we love. It's got a mix of current popular music, kids music, silly music, and older stuff. But every one of these songs is upbeat and makes you want to move!
15 Upbeat Songs to start the day off right:
- Justin Timberlake's – “Can't Stop the Feeling”
- Pharrell Williams – “Happy”
- Ylvis – “What does the Fox Say?”
- Meghan Trainor “Better When I'm Dancin'”
- Portugal. The Man – “Feel it Still”
- Sara Bareilles – “Brave”
- Shawn McDonald – “We are Brave”
- Imagine Dragons – “Believer”
- Trolls Soundtrack – “Get Back Up Again”
- The Lion King – “Hakuna Matata”
- Shakira – “Try Everything”
- Imagine Dragons – “On Top of the World”
- Israel “IZ” Kamakawiwo'ole – “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” & “What a Wonderful World” medly
- Bob Marley – “Don't Worry, Be Happy”
- Taylor Swift – “Shake it Off”
Set the tone for a great morning and a great day while also getting up and getting moving with some upbeat music!