Organisational skills for children are kinda important when it comes to achieving success in life. Our little “little Johnny” is going to need solid organisational skills to manage not only his school life and the demands of education but also his daily responsibilities, home and social life. This in turn, will then be transferable into adult life with organising work, home, relationships, children, etc.
Being organised doesn’t come naturally, it’s a learned skill and one that, I think at least, is best achieved with an element of momentum. Once you start, it really does get easier.
It’s taking time, but here are a few of the ways we’re arming our children:
Get Them Motivated
In one of our family meetings, we explained the benefits of good organisation. How, if they organised their time, they would be finished with household activities and homework more quickly and achieve goals (can I have’s) more quickly. We wanted to be sure that the children saw organising themselves as a positive thing that would help them achieve and not a punishment for being disorganised.
Use Calendars and Schedules
We introduced them to the Weekly Calendar and Daily Schedules. Here we wrote down wake up, school, meal and bed times. We also included after-school activities, sports, play time and work times (i.e., household activities and homework). This schedule has pride of place on our refrigerator (it’s the one place we knew our hungry, growing kids would visit regularly during the day).
The children have a list of “Daily Goals” that is also pinned on the fridge. This is a list of things they need to achieve daily in order to receive their “pocket” money at the end of the week. We’ve taught them to check this list daily to ensure they’ve “achieved” all their “to dos” and it is linked to our “Magic Beads” rewards system to motivate them to keep on top of it.
Use Mini Checklists
With tasks that have multiple steps, we use mini checklist’s that break things down. At first we “posted” the checklist in the appropriate place (i.e., in the bathroom for morning and bed time hygiene) and used pictures so they could “follow” the plan.
Have Them Plan Bigger Projects
If they want a new bike or something larger. Make it into a project. Break down what they have to do and include step by step instructions, ways for them to track progress and achievements. This will demonstrate how organising how to earn and save money, break tasks down, etc., can help them achieve longer-term goals.
Children’s life skills need to be taught, observed and then practiced, practiced and practiced for them to become a good habits. With a little “organisation” on your side, you’ll have them organising themselves no time.
What tips and tricks do you use to teach your children to get themselves organised? As always, we’d love a CANDo email or comment.