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You Can Organize Your Children!

Aug 17, 2007
Having a well-organized home facilitates a successful homeschool.

Resistant, disruptive and disorganized kids can be a challenge when trying to become organized. These types of behaviors are a form of disorganization in itself that take time, energy and focus from parents.

For many, organizing your kids to do school work, chores, put things away, and be respectful and civil can be a daunting task. When frustrated, some parents may resort to anger, threats and even name-calling.

Although anger might seem appropriate at times, if a parent continually sinks into a pattern of disrespect, resentment and negativity toward their child's lack of compliance, it could result in real damage to the developing child who is just learning a sense of responsibility. Such anger may result in a pattern of resistance and rebellion that can defeat the desired goals and damage the child's self-concept and self-confidence. No one wants that!

Nothing breeds unwillingness and apathy more than feeling accused and inadequate. Think of a time when you were feeling that way. Did it make you want to improve at all? Of course, it did not.

Cooperation and positive strokes breed a sense organization, and organization breeds respect. Create an enthusiastic atmosphere with your children. Here's how you can accomplish that:

* Get your children excited about rewards they will get if they clean up their rooms, keep the house tidy and do their chores and school work.
* Make charts and keep them in plain view. Use gold stars, have desirable rewards such as a special play day, a special pair of socks, or a special meal.
* Let them know that you appreciate them and that their participation is important to the success of the family.
* Reinforce the concept of the family as a co-operative unit for the survival of everyone. Bring this across to them in different ways through the day.
* Find something to praise, even if their participation is less than perfect. Accentuate the positive to eliminate the negative! They will feel loved and feel that they are a valuable member of the family.
* Teach them to earn their place by being a contributing part of it.

How To Start!

Bring together a system of effective control using earned rewards and praise which is precise and predictable for all involved.

Create a point system that is clear and concise and produces an allowance that lets kids spend their money the way they want to. They love this! This empowers them! They know that their effort will result in attaining something that is special to them such as a trip to the roller rink or a new possession that is really important to them. This teaches them value for their efforts.

Be encouraging. Do not nag or hurt their feelings when they mess up (which they will do). Make their mistake a learning situation and move on! If they fail, let them know that everyone fails at some time and there will always be a next time. Let them know they can do better, but do not sway in your position. This type of lesson is just as important as learning the capitals of the world or the multiplication tables. It has to be as real as if they were doing a real job and were being paid for their production. The agreed rules must be kept, no matter what.

Many kids from well-to-do families have so much - too much! It's all there without any effort on their parts, and they don't have to earn a thing. They take it all for granted. To avoid this feeling of expectation, create incentives attached to the task, that are specifically meaningful to the child and let them learn the lesson that dedication and completion equals reward.

Be flexible and change jobs, tasks, and rewards around to keep everyone excited and interested. Tasks to earn rewards can change week by week. When dealing with multiple kids, the highest point winner can take the pick of the favorite chores and the lowest point winner gets the ones that are left over. Make everything appropriate for each child according to age and ability. Give them each a fair chance to win.

Consult your child's interests for best effect.

Do they have their own reasons and incentive to complete their school work, keep their rooms clean and their play areas neat? Talk it over with them. Ask them for examples of how it could be more meaningful for them. Gently guide them to discover for themselves the reason for doing things.

Personalize. Personalize. Personalize.

If they want to earn extra points to gain something special or catch up if behind, make extra jobs available. Encourage them by suggesting to take over one of the parent's tasks for a while or by doing a special project for the home and family. Keep the task personal to the child's age and interests. If they honestly do their best for their age and ability, praise them. They will flourish and you will see how very organized and thoughtful they will become. Remember not to criticize even if the result is not up to your expectations. Find something to praise.

Rearing children is a tough job. And when you add homeschooling, it makes it even more of a challenge. Miracles can occur with the right attitude, good communication and good systems. Your homeschool can be so much more that math and literature. It can teach and instill values of self confidence and empowerment. Bring up your children to respect themselves and make their own path in this world and you will have succeeded.
About the Author
Pam Connolly is a professional educator with the San Diego School District. She
has been teaching kids how to type for over 11 years. To teach your child typing,
visit http://www.1stoplearntotype.com .
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