Empower Your Child
The general assumption is that tidying doesn’t need to be taught but rather is picked up naturally.
– Marie Kondo
Now that we are all spending time at home, why not create some time to teach our children how to tidy! Children often feel lost and overwhelmed in a cluttered environment and love neatly organized spaces where everything has its place.
Empower you child! Tidying….
Gives your child the tools to feel confident about how to keep their own space tidy.
Teaches your child how to fold and store their own clothes.
Makes them feel special because their belongings are given a ‘home’ .
Encourages your child to take care of their belongings.
Teaches your child to appreciate what they have and express gratitude.
Teaches your child that it is OK to let go if something doesn’t make you happy (anymore).
Helps your child feel comfortable, happy and calm in their own space.
Helps your child feel responsible about their own, and other people’s, belongings.
Supports your child in her/ his in-dependency .
I am sharing some tips on tidying with your children and, at the same time, teaching them basic tidying skills.
Make tidying fun and playful!
Tidying and playing go together perfectly.
Take it easy
Tidy one (sub)category at a time. For small children that could be t-shirts today, pants tomorrow, next is socks and so on. This way you can avoid that your child loses interest or is distracted and feeling overwhelmed.
Follow the right order Start with tidying clothes, move on to books, papers, komono (toys, games etc.) and finally sentimental items. Sentimental items could be craft work they made or stuffed animals.
Lost & found Ask your child to go and find all their items belonging to one (sub)category, from every little corner of the house.
Make a pile!
Wow, look at what you have!
Happy checks Help your child with the joy checks and keep only those items that really make them happy. To start, ask your child to pick their top 3 favorite things. This can help your child to compare and decide about all other items.
Be there Listen carefully to your child and look closely to how they respond to their belongings. They may start talking about it or they may look at you when they aren’t sure what to do. Ask questions to help them decide; do you play with this toy; would it make someone else happy; do you still wear this shirt? Let your child decide and choose!
Thank you and goodbye Say thank you when letting go, and express gratitude for what the item brought or taught you. "Thank you sweater for keeping me warm." "Thank you book for all the beautiful stories…."
Ask your child to set aside items that don’t make them happy anymore. Make two boxes, one for donation and one to discard (broken toys, torn clothes).
Magic folding! Teach your child how to fold their clothes, and have fun folding together (you will be amazed!!).
Find a home Ask your child what a good place would be to store their ‘happy belongings’, and store all like items together in a place that is easily accessible for your child. This is now the home where their toys belong and will be put away every time after using them.
Admire the work you have done
Decide on a new daily tidy-routine together with your child, to keep your home neatly organised and to continue practicing the tidy skills.