52 Weeks: #27 Get Your Kids Involved

If you are new to 52 Weeks of Organizing, catch up here!

So yesterday I posted a guest post about getting your kids involved in summer organizing and cleaning and today I wanted to continue that discussion because it’s one I’m super passionate about.  The reason it’s so near and dear to my heart is because I would absolutely be a frazzled overwhelmed mom if it weren’t for my kids pitching in as much as they do.  We all work together.  It doesn’t mean I’m supermom or have the world’s best behaved children.  Please!   Trust me, they do not come up to me every week begging to clean the toilets or organize their dresser tops.  No way.  But they do it knowing there is just no getting out of it.  Consistency is the name of the game around these parts.  Since they were little I’ve invested my time into training them and teaching them the organizing process.  Has it been easy, gosh no but I can assure you of this.  It has been worth it.  My oldest kids are now 14 and 11 and I no longer have to hover over them as they do their chores like I use to when they were younger.  I also haven’t had to clean a toilet in years either.  Sweet!


credit: Ben McLeod

With organizing however I still play a very active roll in coming along beside them to work through the PROCESS steps.  Organizing is a skill that includes flexing our decision making muscle over and over and over again.  I want my kids to practice this young to avoid being overwhelmed with stuff later. I wrote in more detail about this here.

So this week, in light of summer vacation, I encourage you to get your children involved in some of the organizing tasks that need to be done around the house.  Even little ones can get involved.  Remember be specific with them…ask specific questions and give specific direction.  AND don’t forget to have fun!  To help you with this part I wrote a post earlier this week over on Organizing Your Way about how to turn organizing projects into a fun scavenger hunt game for your kids.   It’s a win-win, check it out!


credit: Ricecracker

Questions to ponder:

1.  Do you try to get your kids involved?
2.  If you struggle with it, what do you find is your biggest stumbling block?
3.  Which step of the PROCESS do you find to be the hardest?

Please feel free to share your organizing journey and encourage one another in the comments. You are also invited to link up to the linky below with any posts related to your 52 weeks of organizing participation or to any post of an organizing nature that you feel will inspire and encourage others in their quest to get organized. Please remember to link back to here though so we can reach out to as many people as possible in need of some inspiration.

One other thing to consider: by including your link below you, you are giving me permission to use parts of your post including pictures as a spotlight in future 52 Weeks of Organizing posts. Proper credit and links will of course be provided. If you are not okay with this please do not link up. Thanks!

Filed under: 52 Weeks of Organizing, Kid Stuff


16 Responses to 52 Weeks: #27 Get Your Kids Involved

  1. 2
    Nony (A Slob Comes Clean) says

    My goal is to involve my kids on all summer cleaning. I started this last year, and it helped so much for them to develop cleaning skills, AND they had greater appreciation for what I do during the school year!

  2. 3
    Sinea Pies says

    I work in an elementary school and can say first hand that our students love to be helpers. In the home or elsewhere, youngsters can learn to do their part and take pride in their accomplishments (with lots of hugs and praise from us!) 🙂

  3. 5
    Oksana says

    I find it so important to involve kids from an early age. I do, in fact, do that. However, the part that is hard to me is my obsession with perfectionism. Really, it is patience I think. I have a hard time watching kids do something incorrectly and so I end up teaching them/correcting them, etc. Oy! Gotta relax more. Love this topic. Thanks for bringing it up, again.

  4. 6
    Marsha Seiberling says

    oh my…I had a hard time getting the comment box to come up. I put in a blurb at the start of my post today about children and then included what I completed this week. I have no idea which of my 6 or 7 other projects to work on this next week.

  5. 7
    Lisa says

    OT–have you seen the Post-it note Removable Lables?? They have both an online coupon and a rebate for them here in the U.S. http://www.3m.com/us/office/postit/labels/offers.html

    I’ve got a HUGE post coming on how I’ve been using the “52 Weeks…” series to get things done! I’ll post the link when it’s done.

  6. 8
    Di says

    Started last week. I have decided that I will never catch up, but there is progress.

    I picked my number 1 problem area–only took 3 days to get it done. And what did I find out–my biggest problem was I didn’t know where to put the stuff which is why it was there in the first place (I guess). Trying to finish it meant doing several smaller tasks I had put off instead of doing.

    The other thing I have decided is to do “2 minute” tasks. I get tired of working on the same long term project, so I take a break and do a few 2 minute tasks and then get back on track.

    2 minute tasks also work when other things are going on and I didn’t have time to work on problem area 1.

    This week I need to take finished pictures and pick another big project. ( I have another 3 days off.)

  7. 9
    Gloria says

    Honestly, the biggest way to get the kids involved is what you said– consistency.

    Each day we “room zoom.” When they were little, we set the timer and threw all of the stuff in a laundry basket. Now, the ones at home are 17, 14 and 11. I just say room zoom and it’s done in nothing flat.

    The example of consistently keeping the house decluttered shows them it is not overwhelming. If I have something out of the norm, like a project in the backyard, we put it on the calendar and I let them know exactly how much time I need their help.

    I don’t think the system anyone uses really matters as long as it is done routinely. I do use Flylady’s system, but my kids have no set chores. When the bathroom they use looks bad, they now just walk in a clean it. I stick with my daily stuff and our house is a place they know functions better than other homes they have been in.

    By having set ages that they take on responsibilities, such as everyone does their own laundry when they turn 11, it develops over time for them to learn that home care is just as important as school, sports, homework, etc.

    For little ones, setting a timer, putting on some music and doing the work together goes a long way to them being responsible.


  8. 10
    RadiomomRhetoric says

    …small thing–but I will give my smallest kids a wet washtowel or baby wipe and have them go around the house wiping off sticky doorknobs and light switches! They really like to do it! LOL


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