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8 Ideas for Organizing Your Child's Room

By Maria Gracia

Clean your room!

Ugh. Oh, Mom. I'll do it later!

This same dialog is shared by millions of parents and their children all over the world.

With the new school year upon us, you may have the driving urge to get your child's room in order.

Where do you start? Here are a few ideas:

1. SCHEDULE: Schedule a specific date and time to clean out your child's room. Your daughter or son, if she or he is old enough, should be there to help.

2. DUMP OR DONATE: Have a large box on hand for items you will be donating to your local charity or selling at a rummage sale. Also, have a large plastic garbage bag--maybe two or three--for everything you will be disposing of. Your children can help here. Let them know that every item that is of no use to them, that they donate, will be helping another child. Also, tell them that it's important to discard anything that will never be used, to make room for new, useful items.

3. CLOTHES CLOSET: The clothes closet is usually a good place to start. Pull everything out until it's completely empty. Then, the only items that should be returned to the closet are those articles of clothing or other items that are going to be used again. This should eliminate clothing that doesn't fit, is worn out, and so on. If you're not sure if an item fits your child anymore, have him or her try it on right now.

4. BASEBALL CAPS: Hang a baseball cap rack on the back of your child's bedroom door to keep all caps neat and organized. Ensure it's at a reachable level for a child's height. Show him or her how to hang the caps on it properly.

5. SHOES: Give your child a shoe rack to keep his or her shoes organized, easily accessible and in one place. Show your child how to organize shoes, keeping all pairs together.

6. STUFFED ANIMALS, TOYS AND GAMES: Put up shelves in children's rooms. This is usually a better solution for toy storage versus containers, because the toys won't get crushed and will be easily obtainable. Make sure the shelves are at a reasonable height so that your child can reach wanted items.

7. PAPER: Create a filing system for your child, to keep artwork, rock star photos, blank paper, notes from family and friends, etc. Use a portable filing container that is capable of holding hanging files and that can be transported to someplace else if necessary. The ones with handles are nice, since they can be transported to different homes, on vacation, etc. Some of these containers have snap-shut compartments for pens, pencils, clips, and more.

8. RESPONSIBILITY: Teach your children to clean and organize as soon as they're old enough to do so. If you help them do this now, you will be helping them when they're old enough to move out on their own. Devise a simple daily checklist for maintenance. If you have two children sharing the same room, divide the room in half with an imaginary line. Describe this imaginary line to each child. Assign each one the responsibility of keeping their side clean and organized.

Copyright 2000 Maria Gracia. Reprinted with permission from Maria Gracia's Get Organized Now! Web Site. FREE Idea-Pak, Ezine, Slideshows, Articles, Tips, Inspiration and Ideas at the Get Organized Now! website.

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