The school holidays are the perfect time to organise children's things and review your children’s toys and clothes.
As you all take a breath after the chaos of the term-time routine, you will start to spot the things that your children no longer need, have grown out of and fallen out of love with.
The holidays provide a great opportunity to remove those old toys, unloved items, out-grown books and clothes. Whilst you could whisk some things away while your children are at nursery or school (and I have done this myself occasionally), it’s good to involve them, engaging them in the task, methods and reasons why it’s good to pass things and important to help them create healthy habits that will stay with them into adulthood.
You will help your growing child to make room for new hobbies, new toys (as birthdays come along) and new interests and it’s a great activity to keep everyone entertained on a rainy day.
A good organising session will also mean you’ll all go into the new term feeling lighter, clearer and better prepared.
Organising our possessions is a valuable life skill we can teach our children - Laura Williams
It can feel daunting but involving your children in the activity gives them:
- A joint activity to do with you
- The ability to find what they want to play with easily
- A sense of responsibility for their own things
- Skills that will stay with them as they grow
- Some appreciation of the toys they have
- Ability to share their things with other less fortunate children
In the same way you want to be engaged, enjoy activities and understand why you need to do them, so do your children.
How you engage them twill depend on their age and their personality, so here are 10 ideas to try:
- Explain what you are going to do together and why
- Make it fun with a game, playing music or having a race
- Create a competition with a prize for the most well organised room
- Talk about children less for fortunate than themselves and get them to imagine what it might be like
- Get them to make a list of their most favourite toys so that you can ‘protect’ these
- Show them that they will be able to find the things they want to play with more easily
- Explain that you’ll be able to store toys close to where they want to play with them so it’ll be easier to play
- Ask them to look around a messy room and ask them how it feels, get them to imagine what it would be like if there was clear space to play on the floor, do crafts or dance about
- Show them videos, pictures from websites or leaflets from charities that support children, explain that these children don’t have any toys and will love to receive one of theirs that they no longer need
- Explain that there is not lots of room in the house so it’s important than when we no longer need something we give it to someone else to enjoy. Give examples of things you’ve managed in this way
Before you embark on your organising session make sure that you are ready for a declutter first:
- Get boxes ready for charity donations, recycling and rubbish
- Choose a room or area (such as area of room, a cupboard) depending on the time available
- Think about how you are going to remove the items you’ve sorted out from your home before someone find them and changes their mind
Once you’ve decluttered and know what you want to keep, organise items by category, storing them where they’wll be used.
See part 2, coming soon, for storage ideas for children’s clothes and toys.
Would you like help getting organised?
If you need guidance, ideas and practical support to make more of your home, organise your possessions in a way that supports your best life or to get started with your decluttering project, then give me a call.
I provide tailored advice and practical support to clients looking to make changes, to create calm, ordered space and free up time and money to focus on the important things in life. I specialise in organising rooms, garages, wardrobes, paperwork and much more; see my services or get in touch.