Putting together a preschool organization plan sounds like a daunting task. But it can be done. All you need is a little patience and some savvy.
First, recognize that organizing is a skill that can be taught, The Organized Mama explains—not a talent that someone possesses from birth. Children who learn how to organize, benefit in numerous ways, including in school and with friendships. There’s significant value in teaching organizational skills to your preschooler!
The Essence of Teaching Preschool Organization
A pediatrician interviewed by The Washington Post boils down the essence of teaching organization:
- Be consistent and teach consistency.
- Introduce order, including that everything has a beginning, middle, and end.
- Give everything a place to demonstrate spatial order.
- Anticipate and otherwise practice forward thinking.
- Promote problem-solving through the use of imagination.
To demonstrate the concepts of beginning/middle/end, Understood.org suggests that you help children to break down their tasks into manageable steps. This will also help to make the project seem more doable. As your child grows, you’ll likely incorporate checklists into the process. For now, you might create and hang a board that uses images or basic words to guide and remind your preschooler of key steps they need to take.
Organization Books Can Help
You can also read books on the subject, ones they’ll enjoy and that emphasize the preschool organization skills you want them to develop:
- Just a Mess by Mercer Mayer: Little Critter shoves stuff beneath his bed, clothes in his drawers, and toys in his closet. As for cleaning up, he only does so when he needs to find something. This book is fun to read, a perfect example of how being organized in the first place would have been a better idea.
- The Berenstain Bears and the Messy Room by Stan and Jan Berenstain: Brother and Sister’s room is quite a mess and, rather than picking things up, they argue about who should do it. Mama and Papa get quite frustrated. This book includes more than fifty bonus stickers for your preschoolers to enjoy!
- A Little SPOT of Organization by Diane Alber: After tripping over toys and stuffing belongings into closets, there is clearly a better way. In this book, a little SPOT shows up and teaches the children how to organize: their room—as well as organize their thoughts and time. Unlike the above two books, this is not a picture book but can still make for entertaining family reading.
You can also hold fun events where the family organizes spaces in the home together, assigning age-appropriate tasks for the younger children. The pantry is a great example. Preschoolers can help to sort items in the way you choose: by size, for example, or by putting boxes into one pile and jars and bottles into another. Or, you might have your preschooler organize pantry items by size. As you work on this project together as a family, your preschooler can learn about decluttering and organization.
Preschool Organization May Start With Toys
The room where toys are kept will make another great organization project. Your child can organize them by color or by size (small to large). They can put matching pieces together, including blocks, crayons, stuffed animals, and so forth. If they know of toys that are missing parts or are broken, ask them to identify them so you can take a look.
Have Fun Teaching Your Kids How To Organize
Organizing with your preschooler will naturally be a slower process, but it’s also an excellent way to serve as a role model as you share organizational tips. Make the process enjoyable so that your child will associate being organized with good memories of success.
Being organized is one of the most important skills we try to teach all of our students at Horizon Education Centers. We know that organization skills will help our students inside and outside of the classroom. If you’d like to learn more about our lesson plans for preschoolers, contact us today to hear more about your enrollment options.