Children don’t feel safe when everything is disorganised and random.
They may appear to like lots of surprises and exciting “happenings” but it can lead to overload and frustration.
When children constantly have their routines interrupted, they feel distracted and unfocused. They need routine and strong boundaries. They look to the significant adults in their lives to provide these.
They are encouraged to do so many after- school programs that they don’t have the chance to just play, dream, wonder or integrate all their experiences and make sense of them. This leads to very low Intrapersonal intelligence.
Believe it or not, children thrive in organised classroom and home environments but need a little wriggle room in both!
Many wise teachers are now giving the children free time once a week – even half an hour puts a smile on their faces! The big complaint from children to me is always that they have no time for free choice and play.
At home, parents can ensure the children have at least one afternoon spare after school!
Organised children tend to learn time management skills at an earlier age.
They learn to timeline their homework assignments, improve study skills and actually finish things before starting the next thing.
They know what is expected from them and understanding expectations is a key skill for successful social skills.
Here are some tips for busy teachers and parents-
Firstly, get YOURSELF organised. Organise your time and
belongings and make sure your class or family notice the changes.
Draw up a time-table and share with children. Stick to it and do the important things first.
Limit the number of after-school activities children do so they can finish homework and have some free time for play, wonder and dreaming.
Show children how to get organised for the next day. They can pack their school bag, important books etc and get lunch organised.
This avoids the frustration and confusion that can reign on busy mornings!
Ensure there is a place for EVERYTHING and children know where it is. If possible label everything.
Insist on children doing some chores so they begin to develop a sense of responsibility.
Plan meals and involve children in those choices and allow them to help prepare the meal.
Minimise screen time. Constantly jumping from app to app and watching programs with large amounts of ads will wreck their concentration skills.
Insist on a reasonable bed time and stick to it.
Even if they cannot sleep and need to read for a while, they will eventually adjust and we know from research that rested children absorb more information in class.
Also- parent time is valid! You need time to think, plan, organise and relax.
If you help children develop time management and organisational skills you will be giving them a life-time gift!