If you've been following our blog post series on removing clutter from your home, you've likely found success finding a place for most of your belongings to go. But now it’s time to take on one of the biggest challenges: the kids’ rooms. Left to their own devices, a child’s bedroom might look like it was hit by a tornado. Clothes, toys, and maybe even food, spread over the floor. It sometimes becomes a black hole where missing items you just can't seem to find anymore go. But when you tell your child to clean up their room, the results are less than stellar.
Getting a child’s room organized takes a bit of effort, but it’s worth it.
Choose a Bed Carefully
The right bed can make a surprisingly big difference. These days, people often opt for larger, full-size beds. That’s a great idea in theory — parents can easily snuggle with their kids at bedtime — but a large bed can take up too much space in a small room. Make sure the bed fits the room properly.
Additionally, certain bed designs can provide you with more space and flexibility. Some loft beds come with a built-in desk underneath. Other beds are lower to the ground, but they have drawers underneath for storage. Having extra space for toys, books and odd knickknacks is always a good idea.
Purchase a Cube Organizer
Cube organizers are perhaps the most versatile type of storage for kids’ rooms. Children can clean up by simply tossing their toys into the boxes, and they’re instantly off the floor and out of sight. At the same time, you don’t have to place a box in each cube. Some can be left open for larger toys or books.
Best of all, the shelving comes in a variety of configurations, and most are stackable, so you can double the amount of storage space you have. Remember that it’s always best to anchor the shelves to the wall to prevent them falling and causing injuries, but it’s especially important to do this if you’re stacking the shelves.
Give Each Item a “Home”
It’s hard for kids to keep things organized when they aren’t exactly sure where they belong. Every item in the room should have its own place. Labels can be particularly helpful in making this happen. If your child can’t read yet, use pictures to show them where each toy belongs.
Hang All Clothes
Dressers take up a surprising amount of space in a child’s room, and if you can avoid having one, you’ll free up that space for other things. Keep all of your child’s clothes in the closet instead. Put an extra hanging rod closer to the ground to give you more space for clothes and to allow young children to easily reach their clothes. Doing this has an added benefit of helping kids to see all of the clothes they own. You’ll no longer have to worry about something getting shoved in the back of the dresser and forgotten until it’s become too small.
Use the Space in the Corners
People tend to waste the space in the corners of a room because it’s difficult to fit furniture into tight corners. Look for furniture that was designed to fit in a corner. Alternatively, use a corner as a “chill space” with something like a bean bag chair for reading.
Corral the Stuffed Animals
If your child isn’t into stuffed animals, count your blessings. Many children have a love of all things cute and cuddly, and they loathe to give up even a single stuffed animal. This often means that there are stuffed animals on the bed, on the floor, and everywhere in between. If your child isn’t ready to give the animals up, find a place to put them. Toy hammocks hang from the ceiling in the corners and fit many of these stuffed animals, but you can also put them all in any other large storage container.
Involve Kids in the Process
Finally, it’s smart to get your kids involved in the organization process. Ask them to show you around the room and tell you what they do in there. See if they have any toys that they’re willing to get rid of. To remove clutter from their room and provide a valuable life lesson, periodically have your kids choose lightly used toys they can part with and donate them to charity. This will ensure someone can get enjoying out of the item while keeping it out of the landfill.
Let your kids help you decide where each item goes, and make sure that they understand how to place items back in the right “home.” In doing this, your child becomes more invested in the process, and they’re more likely to keep up with any system you implement.
Getting rid of the clutter in a child’s room is an overwhelming process, but it can help everyone stay sane. Our tips can help you get started, but it’s always smart to come up with a system that’s personalized to your child’s needs. Once you have a system in place, don’t forget to stay on top of it.