Getting Your Kids Organized for Summer

      1. Childhood Environment- How kids mimic the habits they see?
      Kids mimic what they see their parents doing. For example, If a parent does
      not put things back where they belong, the likelihood is that the child
      won't either. Kids learn by example. If a parent wants their child to be
      organized and the parent is not organized, the parent needs to determine
      what is their stumbling block is and work towards the goal of being
      organized. Organization is something families can work on together. It's
      kind of hard to ask a child to clean their room, if the child doesn't ever
      see a clean room in the house. Parents need to take a look at themselves
      first when asking a child to change their habits. When a parent helps
      themselves, they can in turn help their kids. A good example is this....When
      you are on the airplane and the flight attendant says to parents, "put on
      your breathing apparatus then put on your childs." By helping yourself, you
      can better help your child.

      2. Teaching kids organizational skills can change other aspects of their
      lives. School grades can suffer-A messy binder/backpack can mean lost or late
      school work because they can find what they are looking for when it is due
      Being late to a game/performance-Can't find clothes, shoes, etc...because
      they don't have a system for places to store these types of items.
      Reputation-If a person is tidy, neat and clean, is seen as a good thing.
      Society accepts this social standard better than someone being disorganized
      and messy. This is reality even though stereotyping is not always a good.

      3. Make the process Fun. How?
      Work with the kids. Parents get busy so it can be a fun thing for a
      parent/child to do together.
      Have a bag of goodies as rewards.
      Mark sorting and purging a game.
      Work with their favorite music not parents.
      Allow the child to take breaks, especially those who may suffer from ADD
      Provide a special snack and lunch
      Share in the Childs memories-certain items may conjure up certain thoughts.

      4. What do you need to get started?
      Time and getting a date on the calendar!
      Bags for trash and donations. Set aside a clear plastic tote to use as a
      "memory box."

      5. Zeroing in on one category at a time.
      It is easier to work on one category at a time. Sorting dolls with dolls,
      balls with balls, etc...

      6. Must have organizers.
      Trash can, laundry bin, clear storage bins, bookcases. No "toy boxes"

      7. Do you have tips on keeping your kids interested in staying organized?
      How often to go through this process?
      Whether they want to or not, they have to clean rooms once a week. Generally
      Sunday afternoon and when they want friends over. Major
      organizing about three times a year...March, August and December.