November is a great time of year to help your children organize their room(s). A good decluttering and reorganization before the holiday season can help relieve stress and make you feel more in control of your home, including organizing your child’s room. If you can work with your children and help them set up a functional room for themselves, it will affect the state of organization in the rest of the house.
When planning the layout and organization of your child’s bedroom, keep in mind that defining and setting up zones is crucial. Here are nine possible zones.
Zones for Organizing Your Child’s Room
- Getting Dressed: Be sure to keep clothes your child regularly wears easily accessible. This might mean hooks and bins/baskets rather than awkward hangers.
- Handling Dirty Laundry: Don’t forget to provide a laundry hamper.
- Clothes That Are Too Big: Store them in well-labelled bins up on a high shelf or in another room.
- Play: Adults tend to sort children’s toys by category. However, it depends on how your children play with their toys when they are unsupervised. Some children love to dig through piles of stuff, looking for just the right item to add to whatever they are creating. So, be sure to involve your child.
- Reading: Younger children do much better with their books in baskets, so they can flip through and see the book’s cover as they choose what to read. As children get older, a bookshelf will work.
- Homework/Art: Clear plastic drawer organizers with labels are a fantastic way to keep these items organized, and if you buy one that fits under their desk or table, even better.
- Displaying Favourite Things: Here’s where you can help children learn to honour their belongings by choosing a few favourites to leave out on wall-mounted shelves or the top of a bookshelf.
- Storing Treasures: When it comes to treasures, the key is to keep them to a single bin and regularly decide what is important enough to keep, thereby helping your child set boundaries.
- Sleeping: Watch out for mirrored doors on the closet. Yes, they can cause sleep issues.
5 Steps to a Tidy Room
When organizing your child’s room, take a picture of each zone. Posting them on a bulletin board for your child gives them an awesome visual of what clean (and organized) means. The goal is that the next time you ask them to clean up their room, they will have the tools they need to be successful on their own.
Speaking of providing the tools your child will need, you probably already know that your child’s idea of “a cleanup” is shoving everything under the bed and smoothing out the bed covers a bit. If you can teach your children a quick and easy routine that leaves the room cleaner and tidier, it will make your life a lot easier. You might want to post this step-by-step guide on the door of their room.
Let’s explore these five simple steps for organizing your child’s room in a bit more detail. Don’t forget the first few times you’ll have to work with your child to establish this routine. For the first few weeks, you’ll probably need to set aside a little time every day to help keep him or her on track.
Gather supplies. You will need a laundry hamper, trash can, toy basket and a place for books in the room. Don’t begin cleaning until you have all your supplies in the room. Trying to find supplies one at a time is a waste of time.
Pick up dirty clothes and put them in a hamper. I’m guessing the dirty clothes in your child’s room may be near the hamper, but we want to actually put them in the hamper. Don’t worry about unfolding socks or turning clothes right side out. You can do that when you sort the laundry.
Put trash in the trash can. I know, painfully obvious, but children often don’t have a trash can in their room. So please give your child one. Don’t worry about anything but trash right now. Pick up all the obvious trash and throw it in the can.
Make the bed. I know, making the bed seems like a waste of time. However, try these easy steps and see if it feels better. Smooth out the sheets. Smooth out the blanket or comforter. Fluff your pillows. Stand back and take a quick look at the bed. It should look much neater, not necessarily perfect, just neater. And keep in mind, the bed is not as likely to gobble up random things when it’s neat.
Fold or hang all the clean clothes. This is where that made bed comes in handy. If you have a lot of clothes to refold or rehang, you can neatly stack them on your bed to remind you to fold them later. This saves you a little time now, keeps the room looking neat, and makes sure you will be reminded to put them away before trying to crawl into bed. Please resist the urge to dump them back on the floor. Even better, take an extra 15 minutes and put those clothes away right now!
What About Your Room?
May I suggest that you apply the same principles to tidying your bedroom? After all, the main bedroom is one of the most important yet often one of the most neglected rooms in the house. You need your own sanctuary to get the rest you need to tackle your busy life. And now, celebrate your success with a little treat of some sort. Bribery always works well.
If the 5-step guide above is helpful, contact me, and I will send it to you. I would also love to see a picture of the results of your organizing efforts. Please post your photo on the Get Organized by Design Facebook Page for all to see, and we will celebrate with you.