1) Give your child notice of plans: Children do best when they know what to expect. Its very helpful to them when they have an idea of what the schedule of events for a day might be. They should also be told who else might be there and what the activities are.
2) Set clear expectations: As much as children need to know about what the plan is for the day, they also need to know what their behavior should look like. Setting clear expectations will allow your family to enjoy both the church Cantata and kids party with inflatable jump houses.
3) Understand that your child might be overwhelmed too: The holidays are full of unexpected changes, odd family interactions, and so many gifts! As much as we as adults become overwhelmed with making it all work, children get overwhelmed too. Often children show these emotions through their behaviors and not their words. If you child is beginning to act out or withdraw, ask yourself do they need a break?
4) Don’t overload your schedule: The holidays are supposed to be about time spent together, making memories, and enjoying those we love. That doesn’t always need to look like another event out of the house. It might be a movie night together, board games with carols in the background, or reading books about family traditions.
5) Stick to daily routines: Especially in times of chaos, children need things to be predictable. Its important to stick to routines around sleeping, daily hygiene, and basic chores. These routines allow children to feel that they have some order and control to their day.