Parenting Tips at

“Clean up your room!”: to pass from a chore to a playful exercise

children_choreThe solutions to remedy to it exist, provided that we agree to show them the way:

1 – The toddlers until two-three years old

Do not plan to make them tidy up before two years old. They are, during this period of their life, in an intense phase of discovery of their universe and try above all to touch, to move and to study what surrounds them. On the other hand, they appreciate to find day after day the same toys: it reassures them and allows them to appropriate them and to discover them under various angles. Be thus the mainspring in tidying up, but watch as much as possible to give to every object or type of object a fixed location.

2 – From 3 years old

3 years mark generally the beginning of nursery school, the learning of life in community and the first common rituals as to hang his coat. At home, it is the occasion to follow the movement! The child will appreciate the continuity of the learnings between the school and the house and so you will have contributed to show the coherence of the whole.

The children of this age also have an excellent sense of observation. An asset to be used to encourage them into two actions which will be of use to them in their schooling years (and later!): analyze and classify. So toys are distributed by type in storage bins, and the biggest in a toy trunk.

3 – Older children and teenagers

Is it too late to do well if we did not start young? It is certainly more difficult, but never impossible, realism must be the golden rule. With playing on communication and “fair’s fair” the tidying up topic can be introduced with the biggest.

Besides, teenagers are very sensitive to the image they project of themselves. It is thus a good way to throw back at them the image which reflects their disorder and to propose them adequate solutions. On the subject, the ideas for tidying up are numerous (boxes, trunks, small pieces of furniture, office accessories, etc.) and can emphasize their personal space. A control lever not to be neglected and to be chosen together with them.

4 – Do not tidy up for them!

It is the rule which should be engraved in marble…

To accustom the child to tidy up his things, makes him more responsible: it is a favor you’re doing him by allowing him to become autonomous, to exercise his sense of analysis and observation. In brief, you help him to structure himself. And he will quickly see his interest when he will notice how fast he can put his hand on a specific toy.

On the contrary, parents who tidy up for his child remove all sense of responsibility from him. He will be persuaded that cleaning up is not in his competence, that disorder is natural but not order.

It is thus advisable to adopt a guiding and responsibleness attitude to help them to set up good habits.

5 – Some ideas for storagebedroom_chore

The possibilities for children’s room are very numerous:

  • colored storage boxes (to classify toys by categories);

  • transparent plastic boxes to see the contents;

  • baskets (fabric or plastic) among which some are cunningly foldable;

  • trunks with wheels to be slid under the bed;

  • toy trunks;

  • the small pieces of furniture with incorporated boxes.

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