If there’s one thing that most parents can agree on, it’s the fact that kids tend to bring a certain level of chaos into your life. Any parent who’s ever tried to keep their home organised and tidy when they’ve got kids running around will know exactly how that feels. However, as kids start to get older, particularly the age where they’re going to school, it does become possible to help them develop good habits and help them become more organised. This isn’t always easy but it is always a good idea. With that in mind, here are some ways to help your kids stay organised.
Make things clear to them
As with anything that you’re teaching your kids, if you want them to understand something, you have to make it totally clear what it is that you want them to do. Give them simple, clear, and achievable goals. It’s easy to just say “clean your room” but that’s far too big and too vague. Instead break things up into tasks. Things like “pick your toys up off the floor” or “put things back into one specific drawer” are much better. Making the tasks small and simple means that they don’t have to wonder how to do anything, they can just get on with actually doing it.
Kids lose things, that’s what kids do. Kids have the ability to lose almost anything immediately. However, one of the best ways to make sure that this happens as rarely as possible is to label everything so that they always know what things belong to them. Name stickers for school are an absolute godsend for any parent who’s tired of having to constantly replace lunch boxes, water bottles, and even entire pieces of clothing every few weeks. You can even label things at home to help your kids better understand where things belong and encourage them to keep things tidy.
It can be frustrating to teach kids to be organised since it goes against so much of their natural instincts. However, you need to remember to stay positive at all times. Positive reinforcement is far more effective than anything else and if you’re getting annoyed at them over a lack of organisation that’s just going to create the association in their minds of being organised and feeling frustrated and put upon. By making the experience of organising themselves a positive one, they’re going to be much more likely to hold onto the things that you teach them.
One of the most important things to remember is that, while it’s important for your kids to learn to be organised. It’s just as important for them to just be kids. After all, if you’re spending all of your time trying to make your kids into perfect, obedient little angels then they’re going to miss out on all of the fun of just getting to experience all of the chaos of childhood. In fact, it might well do you some good to join them in that chaos every once in a while.