9 Tips for organizing with children in mind
Reading time – 5 minutes
With school out for summer and children around more of the time think about organizing things so they can keep their stuff put away. Too many times children can only do half of the job because the shelf is too high for them to reach and an adult needs to finish the job. Organize things so they can do the entire job of putting things away or getting things out. It will be less frustrating for everyone.
1. Place hooks so children can reach them and as children grow, the placement of their items should change with their higher reach.
2. Organizing items for children to use should be kept within their reach. If a child constantly needs help accessing these items this will cause frustration for both parent and child. Keep books, toys, dishes, coat hooks, clothes closet bars and towels at age/size-appropriate level.
3. Designate a place for sporting gear, helmets, pads, shoes etc. It may be a shelf or a pegboard with hooks or a mess bag. These 3 options allow the sporting gear to dry out before the next usage. It is important to air out damp items so they don’t get mouldy. When the children arrive home they won’t need to ask a parent what to do with their stuff and when an adult asks them to get ready they can easily collect everything they need. No more piles of gear left on the floor by the door.
4. Establish a routine for water bottles and lunch bags. Make sure the children know how to empty and recycle items from their lunch bag and where to put the bag for storing or use the next day. Do water bottles need to be washed every day or refilled? What is the rule in your household?
5. Wet swimwear needs to be hung up and dried or washed. Make a place for towels to be hung and bathing suits to be dried. Teach your children to wring out or roll their bathing suit in their towel before hanging it up. This will prevent a puddle of water from forming on the floor. Placing swimwear and towels on a hanger to dry may be easier to reach than putting it on a line. You may want to set up a portable clothes drier so it is easy for the children to reach.
6. Remember to always keep cleaning supplies and medicines out of the reach of children.
7. If children are permitted to use the microwave oven unsupervised, place the unit at a height where children can remove food easily without climbing on counters or standing on chairs. This will help prevent injuries from hot food spilling on the child or a child falling.
8. Label bins, drawers, and shelves with pictures or words to make tidying up quick and easy.
9. Establish a bulletin board, magnet board, or a wall covered with magnetic paint as an area to display children’s work. As new work comes home, remove items from the display area and put them in a box. When the school year is over, go through the box and decide which pieces to save and put away and which to recycle.
Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments.
Julie Stobbe is a Trained Professional Organizer and Lifestyle Organizing Coach who brings happiness to homes and organization to offices, in person and virtually. She has been working with clients since 2006 to provide customized organizing solutions to suit their individual needs and situation. She uses her love of physical activity to reduce clutter, in your home and office. She guides and supports you to manage your time. If you’re in a difficult transition Julie can coach you to break free of emotional clutter constraining you from living life on your terms. Online courses are available to help instruct, coach and support your organizing projects. Get started by downloading Tips for Reorganizing 9 Rooms.
Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
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