Staying accustomed to a schedule keeps children's brains sharp and one mom is going viral after sharing an ingenious hack that helps her kids maintain the structure of busy school days.
While summer break is a time for students to wind down and recharge, staying accustomed to a schedule keeps younger children's brains sharp. One TikTok mom is going viral after sharing her summer clock hack to help her kids maintain the structure of busy school days during vacations.
McKinnley Matson posted the video to her account @mdoesdiy, where it received thousands of views, with other parents approving of this creative hack. “With just a few weeks left until school is out for the summer, I am re-sharing my viral clock hack to help keep you sane this summer,” Matson says in the clip.
Matson explains that the clock was not designed to be a strict schedule. "If I'm being honest, my kids only stick to this sometimes, but it gives them a healthy level of responsibility and independence over their days as well as options when they can't think of what to do," she says in the video. She adds that the summer clock helped relieve the “Mom, I’m bored” whine that happened at least three times a day. She also explains that the clock breaks down a kid’s day into “manageable sections to help establish routines and give younger kids a visual to know what time it is," so when kids start asking when lunch was coming, they could look at their clock to know what time of the day it was.
Matson continues in the video: “It's flexible. It's customizable to what works well for you and your family, and it gives kids a reliable framework to guide their days. It's not as rigid or as structured as school, but it gives your kids enough to know what to expect, and they need that."
She made her first summer clock in 2022 and garnered over 4 million views. She turned a wall clock from Walmart into a DIY summer clock, perfect for kids to stay on a schedule during the summer while she worked from home. After printing a schedule that worked for her family in a circular shape, Matson removed the back of the clock and used the faceplate to ensure it was centered. “I found the top of the clock and lined it up with what was noon on my schedule,” Matson explains in the video.
The clock sections were labeled and color-coded, dividing the day into different periods, easily readable by her children. In her video from 2022, Matson expressed gratitude towards parents for various modifications beneficial for their families. These included using pictures instead of words, eliminating the minute and second hand to reduce confusion, and creating individual clocks for each child based on their daily routine. In the comments, parents expressed amazement over the ingenious "summer clock" hack and Matson was met with a ton of praise.
"This a great way to help ADHDers learn to 'feel' time. I'll be making one for my 9-year-old," said @nittanylion76. "We LOVED this hack last year! I shared it with all our friends and now, we are moving forward with this same idea for our homeschool day. Thank you," added @swiftdecoder. "I thought this was for a grown-up. I am still going to use this. Like literally this is the best clock idea you should patent a design," wrote @melilebnz. "I’m an after-school program and summer camp director and I want to make one of these! This is incredible," said @stonecelt.