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Routines in Early Childhood Classrooms

Updated: Nov 27, 2018

Routines are the currency of childhood. When children know what to expect of their day, they are able to fully participate. Teachers, especially early childhood teachers, are trained to expertly provide structure and routine for their young students.

As much as early childhood educators work to provide a consistent schedule, there are times when this is impossible, such as during a holiday break.

Some children return from Thanksgiving, winter or spring break ready to resume their very familiar routine. They run into their classrooms, sometimes stopping to give their teacher a hug and engage in an interesting activity.  

But other children are not as emotionally resilient. They may struggle with separation, as if it were their first day of school, even though it was only a week or two break.

Fortunately, teachers are trained to anticipate the needs of children who need more support. They understand how to help children feel comfortable by differentiating the instructional supports, so each child gets what she needs. They are knowledgeable in strategies to help parents understand how to help their child before and after school breaks. Most importantly, they know that the week(s) prior to and immediately following a break from school can be tough for everyone. So they, just like the children and their parents, take a deep breath and wait for the familiar routine to resume.

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