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The key to a happy and productive home is to get your kids organised. We give you tips and ideas for storage solutions, clutter-free spaces and a clean home.
Juggling family life with work and school commitments can be tough. There’s commuting, meetings, conference calls, laundry, cooking, endless activities, homework, parties and playdates… the struggle to get your kids organised is real. And even though your kids may have magical powers when it comes to accumulating mess, a sorted, clutter-free space can make everything much easier. Keep things streamlined with schedules and lists, daily and weekly routines and clever storage solutions – here are our top tips and tricks on how to do just that.
If your young kids have many toys, the challenge to keep them tidy can drive you mad. But the best way to organise a preschooler's playroom is to start good habits early – you’ll save yourself a lifetime of stepping on stray puzzle pieces. After play, encourage clean-up time where everyone pitches in. Plastic storage boxes and tubs are useful for painless packing away and keeping things clean and tidy. Help them take ownership by labelling boxes with sticker letters or, even more fun, let them decorate their storage boxes with permanent markers and stickers, then, come pack-up time, they’ll be super-keen to put their things away in their special boxes.
Hot Tip Puzzles are great for young kids’ development but they’re also a nightmare when pieces go missing, so keep them contained in clear plastic storage boxes.
Sort through the massive pile of art supplies and pack their kit into a trolley – it keeps the pens and paint tidy, plus everything’s on wheels and accessible when inspiration strikes. Display their finished masterpieces on a pinboard or trim to fit in gallery-style frames.
The secret to decluttering kids’ rooms and maintaining a clean home is having a dedicated place for everything. A cube bookcase is the perfect nook for school gear. Encourage your child to stow their stuff as soon as they step through the door to keep things clean and tidy.
If you’ve got a gaggle growing up, then a larger shelf system is the right idea. Use chore charts to make unpacking and putting away an official part of the weekly duties. Merit stickers are a great way to reward them when everything is put back in the right spots.
Some more ideas to get your kids organised: keep track of lunch boxes and library books by storing on shelves or in plastic storage tubs. Mount wall hooks for backpacks. Magazine files, paper files and document trays can collect important papers and permission slips – you know, those things you were supposed to hand in yesterday?
Hot Tip It is never too late to label every single item your kids own. A laundry-proof marker or set of clothing labels will help you avoid the lost property box.
Tweenagers are kids aged 9-13. At this age, they’re starting to crave privacy, which you can deliver with a locker-style storage cupboard. Functional and old-school, it helps declutter kids’ rooms and keeps trinkets off the floor.
It’s a good idea to help them make decorating decisions, you’ll have more success in keeping rooms neat and tidy. Floating shelves can display special toys or knick-knacks and can also help organise your kids’ rooms. Clear jars are good for storing hair clips and coloured pens. Study-wise, this is the perfect time to establish good homework habits. A designated study space, with snazzy stationery and high-tech gadgets, will entice older children away from the TV. Settle into a daily routine now and you’ll set them up for the future.
Invest in highlighters and sticky notes and help get your kids organised with to-do lists to plan and prioritise their workload. Devise organisational ideas for maximum efficiency, like different-coloured folders for each subject, or use a cool clock for alternating timed periods of study with short breaks to keep them on task.
Between school, sport and socialising, it can also be tricky to keep track of them at this age – let alone their belongings. It is a good idea to invest in a family calendar to make a note of key events like birthday parties or exams. Get your kids organised by taking it to the next level with colour-coding with designated markers, using a different pen for each family member.