Admit it – your children probably don’t want to help you out by cleaning up or helping to organize around the house. For them, it is much more fun to flip the house upside down. However, teaching kids about the value of being tidy and organized is a good life skill for them to have. Here are 5 Simple Ways to Teach Your Child How To Get Organized:
#1. Set a good example
If you wash the dishes once a week, or your table is always loaded with piles of papers, and there are more clothes on the floor or chairs than in the closet, don’t expect your kids to be any different!
So first things first, set a good example, by trying to be organized yourself and explain to your child the benefits of being organized.
You could have a calendar or sheet on which you should write down your daily family tasks together.
Also, explain the consequences of a huge mess in their room – for example someone might hurt themselves stepping on small toys and so on.
#2. Your house can’t be perfect
But having a place for everything is a start towards being organized and you can encourage your child to do this too by finding a place for each and every toy.
Point out that if they do this, they will find everything they are looking for more quickly and the house starts to look neater too.
- You could use shoe boxes with labels which also helps develop reading skills.
- Back of the door shoe organisers are great for storing small toys, art supplies and pieces of Lego.
- Invest in a few colorful boxes where kids can keep stuff.
#3. The perks of lists
Calendars, day planners, and various other lists of what each family member has to do are really useful and they can help children feel organized too.
You might have a task or chore list that they have to work through then your child could mark all tasks off as they complete them. Some parents like to use a list for the things that the child needs to do before school, e.g. wash face, get dressed, eat breakfast, brush teeth, put lunchbox in schoolbag, etc.
Lists do help teach kids that it is good to be organized and also to achieve things step by step.
#4. Help children to learn how to take care of things
This is a good way of showing your child how to take care of things and also how to know when they need to pass something on if they are no longer playing with or using it or have outgrown something.
- Each evening help your child put away their toys and clothes and shoes. If you put them away for them they will never learn!
- Each month you could have a session to go through either toys or clothes to see what works and what is unwanted. Gift unwanted toys to your nearest children’s hospital or clothes to charity shop. Some schools also collect clothes as fundraisers so this can be a good way of making your child feel good about letting go of stuff because they are helping somewhere else.
- Teach your child that by looking after their things, they will last longer and will be useful for longer.
- Have a rule of “1 thing in, 1 thing out” to avoid toys or clothes piling up.
#5. Be patient
If you are the super-tidy type of person, then remember to be patient with your child as kids have a very different perception of cleanliness and order to adults. Try to give them the time and space to learn themselves how to tidy up.
Don’t expect kids to know how to be organised or how to do things. If you have a particular way of doing things or storing items then patiently show them how to follow your way so they learn.
By helping and being side by side with your child as you show them the right way, they will gradually get the hang of it and learn to be even more tidy and organized.
Over to you now. Do you have any tips for helping kids to learn how to be organized? Share them with us in the comments below.