An organized child is not born–they are developed. A child needs to learn how to systematically approach a problem to create order out of chaos. They need to learn how to step back and cluster together materials that will help them solve problems. Basic skills in organization developed while they are young will follow them throughout their lives. And that also applies to toy storage ideas. The key to encouraging kids to organize should begin at an early stage. Here are some tips you can follow:
1. Start by Giving Them Daily Chores
Kids can start by developing the habit of putting their slippers in the right place before going to bed, and organizing their bed before eating breakfast. Small tasks must be given to kids to develop organizing habits.
Damon Korb, the author of the book entitled “Raising an Organized Child: 5 Steps to Boost Independence, Ease Frustration and Promote Confidence” emphasized the need to have daily routines consistently followed. This helps to train kids about the value of discipline and organization.
2. Every Activity Should Have a Beginning, Middle, and an End
Develop time management, discipline, and organization by showing kids the value of finishing tasks you start. Show them the value of each step and allow them to practice by setting aside playtime, reading time, and study time. Experts say it is best to teach them that they cannot start a new task without finishing the first task.
For example, dinner is not finished until all plates are washed and put away. And only after these sequences are completed can we begin watching TV or playing. Putting pauses in between playtime is also encouraged by experts. These pauses will allow the kids to eat, relax, and put away toys they no longer need.
3. Take Advantage of Toys and Playtime
The most potent thing that influences your child is the toy he plays with. Play is an activity that can encourage a child’s creativity. This is also the best tool a parent can use to develop values the child can use when he grows up. Organizational skills are best developed by teaching kids how to put away their toys at the end of playtime.
4. Foster Their Interest and Imagination
The best way to make a child follow is to trigger their interest and imagination overactivity, and there are so many ways we can encourage them to do that, such as:
a. Listen and Guide – Let them join you in buying the storage bins for their toys. Listen to how they plan to keep their toys in order. The role of a parent is to guide them in selecting the best in the market by letting them decide.
b. Let Them Create a System that Works for Them – Allow them to label the storage bins of their toys. Kids work better with pictures instead of words. They can remember colors better than words. No matter how many times you dictate where they need to put their toys at the end of playtime, they will still have their way of doing it. So listen to them and provide options for them to follow.
c. Incorporate Fun in their Daily Chores – You can use music while organizing if the task is to return toys to where they are kept. You can also encourage them to sing while putting away their toys—that way, the focus is taken away from the task but directed to the fun of doing it.
d. Choose storage ideas for toys that the kids can also use as playthings. For example, they can play hoops while putting their toys in a bin, box, or hammock and earn points for shooting the toy in the right storage.
e. Play the music they associate with eating or use a bell to ring when time is up. As long as parents are consistent in everything they do around the child, they are bound to develop the habit.
5. Do the Task with Them
Parents are the most influential role models that children imitate, and bearing that in mind is a major component in knowing how to teach kids the values you want them to keep. For example, when you ask them to clean up their playroom, do the task along with them. Be there to encourage and coach them so that they feel your support for them. Provide positive feedback and incentives whenever they practice the skill you want them to have.
6. Associate Decision-Making With Toys
If parents can establish a routine and a rule in keeping toys, the kids will develop planning and organizing skills to help in decision-making. Toys accumulate over time, and kids should learn when to let go of toys they do not need. Teach them to keep a certain number of toys, and if they want more, they need to decide what to do with the ones they do not use or which one they will need to let go of.
Parents need to understand that their kids are kids for a reason and a season. They still do not have their parents’ physical, mental and emotional capacity, so you should go down to their level when you train them. For example, buy toy storage containers in sizes that are the right size for them to move or high enough to reach. How can they put a toy in a vessel that is double their height? Or to keep all their toys in a definite place when they are just starting to walk?
It is good to train kids in organizing their toy storage containers, provided you have reasonable expectations. Children are still developing their personalities and honing their senses. It would help if you learned to enjoy this phase in their lives because this allows your children to know that you and they are working together to reach a common goal. As long as children do not feel threatened, they will eagerly accept rules that you set, being the parent.