Sometimes the things we want for Mother's Day are really gifts, but a gift of more time to relax.
And that usually means not having to pick up so much after the kids!
Today Sarah is back with a great article about how to get those kids organized and get some of that time picking up after them back for relaxing!
Growing up with two brothers who are nearly a decade younger than me, I’m no stranger to the utter
destruction that can take place in a child’s bedroom. Kids’ rooms can go from neat and tidy to looking like a cyclone hit them in a matter of a few minutes. This is only exacerbated when multiple children share one room (and don’t even get me started on sleepovers).
It’s easy to let your kids’ messes stress you out, especially when they overflow into other rooms like the family room and kitchen. I can’t tell you how many times I stepped on building blocks and Transformers during those years.
While there is no solution that will keep your children’s rooms neat and clean all the time (they are
human, after all), there are some great ways to instill organizational skills in your kids starting at a young age.
Here are a few tips:
Set a Good Example
Do you let mail stack up in the entryway and leave dishes in the sink after dinner? The old adage, “Do as I say, not as I do” is easy to use, but the fact of the matter is, kids need a positive example to follow. If you take an active role and keep a positive attitude about performing daily housework, chances are your kids are likely to adapt the same attitude. Furthermore, when you begin teaching your children how to clean up, it’s important to help them to understand that a truly clean house takes teamwork.
It’s extremely important to communicate to your kids exactly what you mean when you say, “clean your room.” For some kids, a clean floor equals a clean room, even if everything is just stuffed under the bed or in the closet. Creating a checklist with each step, and posting it in their room, is a great way to communicate this. If your kids are not old enough to read yet, try using pictures or icons instead of words. For example, put a picture of a bed as the first step denoting “make your bed,” and so on.
Get Technical with Smart Storage Containers
The one, seemingly endless, source of clutter in a child’s room is their toy box. Rather than having your kids dump everything into this one large collection zone (only to make a huge mess searching for their favorite toy an hour later), try doing away with the toy box and opting for organized, compartmental storage instead.
One of my favorite brands for storage and organization is ClosetMaid. They offer customizable storage systems for entire closets and storage cubes in many different fun colors and patterns that are perfect for kids’ rooms. Make the most of them by designating one cube for each type of toy or book.
Give Positive Reinforcement
One of the most important ways to instill organization skills in your kids is to show them how rewarding the end result is and teach them to take pride in their clean spaces. Getting kids to take ownership will push them to keep their areas tidy. To get them interested initially, try making a game out of the chores, rewarding them with a small treat, or even linking it to a favorite song. With the right amount of positive reinforcement, de-cluttering and cleaning will soon become second nature to your children.
Can you think of some other ways>
We'd LOVE to hear them!
About the Author:
Sarah Kellner is a writer for The Home Depot who writes on a wide variety of family and home
improvement topics. To find the storage cubes mentioned in this article, visit homedepot.com.