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Checklists for Better Mornings and Executive Functioning Support!


“Get back up there and brush your teeth!”


She had said this to Harry over and over again… ad nauseam… until she began to dread every single school morning.  


There was always a rush.  


And most of the time, she blamed Harry.  And his toothbrush.


Let me introduce you to Harry, my cousin’s son.  Harry is an adorable six-year-old with a knack for having a memory as “reliable as a sieve” (or so says his Mom). Harry had a morning routine that was about as consistent as Spring in Florida – one day sunny and pleasant, the next, thunderstorms and tantrums. 


(Ironically, here in Florida right now, it’s the end of March and it’s thundering.  No tantrums…)


But there was one aspect of his routine that remained constant: his utter inability to remember to brush his teeth before leaving for school.


Every morning, Harry would hop out of bed with great enthusiasm, get dressed and run

down the stairs to breakfast.  He’d eat breakfast, then sit and watch a cartoon before jetting out the door.


But then…


“GO BRUSH YOUR TEETH!”, she yelled as she looked at Harry's toothy grin and the distinct lack of minty-fresh breath that should accompany it. 


Six-year old “breakfast teeth”?  Gross!

 

And there is Harry’s frazzled mom, barely awake herself, trying to get everyone out the door while simultaneously juggling her phone, backpacks, and a never-ending stream of requests and school reminders.  


Harry would hustle back upstairs, “half-way” brush his teeth, and race to the car as it was practically leaving the driveway.


The cycle would repeat itself the very next morning, like Groundhog Day with a dental twist.


Enter our hero – that's me, in case you were wondering – with a stroke of supportive, visual brilliance that would forever change the course of Harry's morning routine. After listening to my cousin share one too many toothbrush-related morning overwhelms, I simply suggested to her: Harry needed a visual aid, a tangible reminder of his morning tasks that even the most forgetful six-year-old couldn't ignore!


I created the ultimate morning checklist – detailing each step of Harry's routine, from brushing his teeth to grabbing his backpack.  I even got Harry’s input on some of the colors!

The next morning, armed with his trusty checklist, Harry approached his morning routine with great determination. He checked off each item on his list – use the bathroom, check.  Get dressed, check.  Eat breakfast, check.  


Brush teeth, CHECK!


Say good-bye to the dog… can’t forget that!


And DONE!


And from now on, the toothbrush “forgetting” was no more! Harry had his checklist, and it was smooth sailing all the way to school.


And as for Harry's mom? Well, let's just say that her mornings were suddenly a whole lot less chaotic and a whole lot more enjoyable. With her newfound freedom from toothbrush-related stress, she could finally sip her coffee in peace and bask in the glory of a job well done.  


Well… with the help of her hero… me, with my stroke of supportive, visual brilliance.


 


If you have a kiddo with autism, ADHD, or any other related disability and there's a struggle with routines, time management, or organization at home or at school, let's schedule a time to chat. Grab a spot on my calendar HERE. I'd love to help.


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