“Clean up your room” is a phrase most parents are familiar with. Kids and clutter often go hand in hand. Instead of shutting the door (which isn’t a bad option), give your child the tools for tidying by creating an organized space. Here are five things to keep in mind:
1. Look at the room from your child’s point of view. Often closets and drawers are too tall to be manageable. Get down to your child’s eye level and then assess his or her space. The view may surprise you! Shorter furniture, like a dresser instead of a chest of drawers, is more ideal for little kids. And make sure the closet is set up with low rods and baskets or bins on the floor.
2. Simplify. A room or closet filled to the brim is going to be hard to maintain. Take everything out of your child’s room that doesn’t need to be there. Store out-of-season or outgrown clothing in the basement or another room. Create a “toy library” where kids check out a certain number of toys and return them before they’re allowed to check out more. And clean out your child’s desk at the end of each school season to make sure old papers and books aren’t causing clutter.
3. Make sure the room has adequate storage. Getting ready in the morning will be a breeze when clothing options are readily accessible. A dresser will provide ample drawer space for storing socks, shirts and everything else. Use bookcases, baskets and benches for storing additional items that are kept in your child’s room, such as art supplies and toys. An organized room is easier to keep clean because there’s a place for everything.
4. Give your child a homework area. Studying, homework and projects are best completed at a desk where books and supplies can be stored. What’s more, when you put a desk in your child’s bedroom, you provide a quiet work environment away from the hustle and bustle of the household in which your child can get things done.
5. Create a daily routine. Set up a ritual where you and your child put items away before bedtime. As your child gets older, he or she can do the routine alone. When kids get in the habit of putting things away, clutter stays at bay and a room never gets out of control.
An organized bedroom is a place where your child can do his or her best, and it’s a spot where childhood memories take root and grow.