This past month the focus has been all about you. Digging deep and doing some tough thinking about your organizing journey. From knowing if you have hoarding tendencies, to solving the ‘too much stuff’ issue, to acknowledging the fact that you may not be ready to get organized.
As we all may know, the apple usually doesn’t fall far from the tree. As we live out our lives, our children see us all the time. And fortunately (and unfortunately), that includes the good and the bad.
As many families get ready for the ‘Back To School’ extravaganza, let’s take a moment to focus on family. Kids learn from what we model and what we teach them. In my past life as a teacher it never took long to know which children had parents who had rules and expectations and which families didn’t.
As many families get ready for heading back to school, here are my top 3 tips for parents (that really does have something to do with organizing):
I was brought up in a house where respect was expected. All.the.time. We were brought up to respect our elders, our home, our vehicles, and our possessions. Although growing up I never thought we had a lot, we did. We had all that we needed (even though our friends always seemed to have more). I know: woe is me! When it comes to respect, as adults, we need to model it. If our kids see us respecting others and respecting the rules set out, they are more likely to also show and have respect.
Kids thrive on routine. Quite honestly, I’m a grown adult and love routine. As nice as it is to have a break from routine in the summer, it is also a blessing to get back into it. Some routines that may make things easier on a family might be:
- Make lunches the night before.
- Take everything out of backpacks and place on the kitchen counter.
I’m certainly not saying that you have to be rigid with routines, however routines are good for everyone.
When kids are in school, they are expected to put their things away. Just spend one hour in a kindergarten room and you will see. There’s no leaving a mess at the water table and the room is certainly spotless at the end of the day. So why is it that kids can follow that expectation at school yet have difficulty in their home? The teacher sets that expectation and follows through. The same can hold true in your home. If the expectation is that toys are put away at the end of the day, then toys need to be put away at the end of the day. If the expectation is that Johnny needs to clear the table after dinner, then Johnny needs to clear the table.
Please don’t get the wrong idea about my family. We are not perfect and I have never won the mother-of-the-year award. We don’t always run like a well-oiled machine. My hubby and I pick our battles (and yes – we have our battles with our kids) but there are certain things that are non-negotiable. It’s taking life-moments and making them teachable moments for our kids. It’s modeling (and the modeling never stops) in the hope that our kids become productive, caring citizens of the world.
So as you prepare your kids to start school, think about what values you uphold and what you hold near and dear to your heart. Feel free to share your own thoughts!