An idea for streamlining mornings with bigger kids

A few weeks ago, my friend Susan tried a new thing to help get out of the house more easily in the morning. Her daughter is 8, and suffered the same thing I think all kids between the ages of 2 and, oh, 45 do--inability to focus on getting out of the house on time in the morning.

Susan realized that all the yelling, nagging, cajoling, and counting to 10 she was doing wasn't making a dent in the problem, so she looked at it from a different angle and decided to give her daughter some of the responsibility and control of the process.

She asked her daughter to figure out when they needed to leave so that they didn't have to rush, and then work backward to figure out by what time she needed to do each step of the getting-ready process. Her daughter was intrigued by the project, and made a great schedule for herself.

I think this is just absolute brilliance on Susan's part, and decided to try it myself. Of course then I got derailed by other stuff* so I haven't done it. But it's going to be the assignment I give my older one (and offer to my younger one, although he might not be quite ready for it) when I get back from another work trip next week.

I'm wondering if any of you out there would be willing to try this experiment also, and see how it goes in the first week, second week, after a month, and six months out.

If it works, then Susan may have discovered The Secret To Mornings and we can start designing the monument to be erected to her.

Anybody in?

* like being late in the morning. Which reminds me of the problem of not being able to make decent coffee before you've had your coffee in the morning....