Organization is the Key
Parents, educators and school counselors can directly impact children’s success in school and ultimately in life, by spending time teaching organizational skills. Not only does this teach some useful skills but it directly impacts the brain by establishing good habits.
Here are a number of ways to help children (as well as ourselves) create organized lives that ultimately and paradoxically create lives of more freedom and joy.
- Establish a schedule and review it first thing. By giving children an overview of what to expect throughout the day, we are helping them learn to plan, anticipate and manage their energy and focus. Even young children can learn to visualize the activities of the day by drawing pictures or noting upcoming events on a daily calendar.
- Create a Clutter Free Environment. Clutter not only distracts but exhausts energy. Teach children how to keep their environment free of clutter by categorizing materials, toys and clothes. Teach the ‘take one out–put one away’ rule to keep clutter from becoming overwhelming.
- Teach effective work habits. Multitasking has been shown to be a highly ineffective way to accomplish any task with excellence. Instead, teach children to focus exclusively on one task for a short designated period of time (timers are often very effective) followed by a short rest and re-energizing period. Compete most difficult tasks first when energy is highest followed by less demanding tasks. Break big tasks into smaller chunks to make them less overwhelming.
Organizational skills like any skills must be taught and modeled. So often we expect that children will just pick up these habits naturally. While this happens for some, it is more likely that children need instruction and reminders in this area as much as in any other learning opportunity.
School Counselor Resource on Organizational Skills: Grab ‘n Go Lesson on Being Organized
Wyatt Learns about Being Organized
It’s time to catch the school bus and Wyatt can’t find anything. Where is his backpack? his lunch money? Wyatt is about to learn a valuable lesson about the importance of being organized and the benefits of planning ahead. This adorable story offers simple helpful ideas that kids and parents can use to make life less stressful and more fun.
If you’ve ever lost your lunch money or misplaced your favorite toy, you can relate to Wyatt. this adorable story offers simple, helpful ideas that kids and parents can use to make life less stressful and more fun! ! Erin K. Casey, author of Zany Zia’s Hats to Where