Where Are the Keys? 4 Tips for Parents with Kids Who Misplace Important Things
Being organized is your best defense against losing those important items. Instilling this behavior in your children will take more than just constantly reminding them. Here are some ways to create an environment in which those items aren’t misplaced.
Establish a Set Routine
Have a routine that has to be followed every day. Teach your kids that their items need to be put away as soon as they walk in the door. They also need to pack in the same way every day. Repetition is the key to not misplacing important things. Kids tend to lose focus very quickly. If they know that they need to do the same steps each day, this will help them to maintain focus. There won’t be any rushing around in the morning trying to get out the door. Getting ready for the day will become simplified.
Create Storage Solutions
The easiest way to not lose things is to have a place for everything. Make a space for keys and wallets. This can be a key hook area or container to store everyone’s keys and wallets. Have hooks setup for backpacks and coats. Use a centralized place for the shoes that are regularly worn. Create a mail storage place to put all those bills that need to be paid. Teach your kids to put their completed homework assignments back in their backpacks. Having a set space allows you to get out the door in a reasonable amount of time.
Maintain a Backup
Sometimes things may get lost. It is important to have a backup plan in place. The most common item that is lost are your keys. Make sure to have duplicate keys made before they are misplaced. You can then store them in a safe. This way you won’t have to waste time trying to find them when you’re in a hurry. You can just go to the safe and use the backup keys. When you have more time, you can retrace your steps to find your lost keys. This will eliminate some of the stress associated with misplacing your keys.
Reward Positive Behavior
Yelling at your kids to get more organized doesn’t help anything. Reward their behavior when they put their items away as soon as they get home. This will make it a positive experience for everyone. It doesn’t have to be a large reward. Start with small items such as stickers or extra free time. You want to instill in your children the desire to be more organized. Over time, it will become second nature for your kids. You may find yourself not having to waste time looking for lost items. This reward system may even work for your spouse as well.
Have system in place to deal with those commonly misplaced items. Consider using these tips to help you establish this system.