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Evening Routine with Pre-Schoolers

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Evening Routine with Pre-Schoolers

Post by PastorDan on Mon Jun 13, 2016 10:14 am

This is a reprint of this blog post.




Evening Routine with Kids



Mommy, Daddy, I’m Hungry


Don’t we all hear that? I think about friends who have teenage boys right now—they probably hear that all the time. (Or they don’t, and they just need a can of WD-40 for their refrigerator.)

Previously, we have discussed morning routines and daytime routines. What about your evening routines? How many of those are there? Do you have a dinner routine? Do you have a bedtime routine? What do these look like?

Dinner

Wash hands
Set the table
Pray
Eat
Clean up the table
Wash dishes
Bedtime

Take a bath
Brush your teeth
Put on pajamas
Read some stories
Pray
Go to bed
I’m sure we all have several different types of evening routines. It’s the time of day to begin to wind down. It’s been a long day, but for some of us, this is the time during the week that we get to spend with our children. What better time than now to continue to teach the faith? Here are some ideas to make teaching the faith a part of your evening routine:

Idea: Begin using the same prayer before and after your evening meal.

Routine is not just a timely way of doing things, it can also be in what you say. Why do little ones remember rhymes so well? Is it because they comprehend them? Or is it because they are repetitive? I would contend that it is the latter.

As you sit down for your evening meal, consider using the same prayer for a period of time. You can use one before and one after the meal. Using a prayer repeatedly over a period of time allows your young children to begin to participate in a prayer life. They will be able to recite the words to the prayer after putting them to heart. Dr. Martin Luther left us a great outline for prayer before and after meals. You can find that at the bottom of the page here.

Idea: Follow an order of prayer from a hymnal.

When you sit down for lunch, go through an order of prayer from the hymnal. See this post for examples. Don’t worry if your children are “too young” to understand what is going on or are squirmy the entire time you do it. This practice will accomplish several things:


  1. It will show your children that faith is not just a Sunday event for your family.
  2. By following these orders of prayer, your children will hear things daily, like the Creed or the Lord’s Prayer. This will give them something to participate in when they go to Divine Service on Sundays!
  3. It gives you a framework to include Scripture readings and prayer.

In the evening, consider using a great children’s devotional resource during the time for Scripture reading and devotion in the order of prayer. Use age-appropriate resources for your children likethis one for younger children (or this one for older children.)

Idea: Read your children two stories before bed, one that they chose and one from a great story Bible.

As parents, we all know the importance of reading to our children. There is something that is so great about having your child run up to you and say, “Daddy, will you read this book to me?” Consider this in your bedtime routine: Read your child two stories, one from any book in their collection and another from a great story Bible such as this one. Doing so will begin to teach your young children the importance of God’s Word in their life and how we should daily devote time in reading and hearing it.

So what do you think? Do you like these ideas? What is an evening routine you use to teach the faith? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!
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PastorDan
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