All responses taken from our Facebook groups: Foster Parenting Toolbox and Kinship Parenting Group.
Having an after school routine is an important part of ensuring homework is completed and evenings at home run smoothly. We asked current foster, kinship and adoptive parents about their after school routines. Here’s what they shared:
“Pick boys up from school and we have no plans for the first hour. They get a snack on the way home from school and then when we get home they can go to their rooms, play on electronics and rest. I don’t ask them to do anything or really even talk to them during that time unless they come to me. I ask about their day in the car and talk more about it at dinner. We usually eat dinner at 4:30 and they do homework afterwards. Then they read before bed.”
“Pick up kids, go home, backpack clean out/hang up. Then they eat snacks while I go through paperwork and sign anything. While we are all at the table, we decide to keep, work on, file (memory boxes) or photograph items from the day. Then they clean up from snack time and get supplies to finish their homework. We do homework at the table as a group all helping each other. After homework is done we decide 20 minutes of reading then OR before bed. Once the decision has been made we proceed as decided. They either play outside with friends or in the toy room (no screens) for an hour. Then true free time begins. This is when they can ask to get on the computer, switch, tablet, phone or TV until dinner is done (normally about 30 minutes). After dinner, depending on what time it is (7 p.m. we start bedtime routines), we either go back to free time or we start bedtime routines.
Bedtime routines: kid 1: shower, laundry (an outfit, pjs and towels from the day before), pick out the next day’s clothes, prepare backpacks, pack snacks/lunch, water bottle in dishwasher, technology charging, and room tidy. Kid 2: laundry (an outfit, pjs and towels from the day before), pick out the next day’s clothes, prepare backpacks, pack snacks/lunch, water bottle in dishwasher, technology charging, and room tidy, then shower, reading, teeth, potty and bed by 8:15.”
“Take off shoes
Hang up backpack
Unpack backpack & lunch box
Bathroom & wash hands
Snack & relax
Pack up backpack for next day
Electronics or play until dinner
“Go through backpack, snack, play outside (usually), wash up for dinner, eat, homework, shower/teeth, and chill time/screen time. I set out their clothes for the next day, then night night. After they go to bed I pack lunches for the next day. Sports might rearrange some of this but that’s basically what we do.”
“Just wrote it down! For our 6th grader –
3:30-4:30: snack and screen-free free time
4:30-4:45: clean up from free time
4:45-5:15: reading or homework
5:15-5:45: music practice
6:15-7:15: homework or other to dos (like showering)
7:15-7:30: bedtime snack
7:30-8ish: wash up for bed, we read to her, bedtime”
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