BRAIN STORMING “First of all, let’s organize a small meeting with the child: let’s explain in detail what we will do, why we will do it and what value our action has, that is to fix the house, a place that we all share. We present this moment as an opportunity to be together and have fun with mum ”.
LET’S ORGANIZE BY PLAYING “Let’s pass the concept that being organized is a game like any other: to reinforce the concept, everyone wear overalls and aprons, and equip yourself with the tools you will need: garbage bags for what needs to be eliminated, boxes of cardboard, scotch tape and markers. In fact, the things that are no longer needed will end up in special containers, to be allocated to voluntary associations that will give them a second life “.
THE ROOM FIRST OF ALL “So let’s start with the actual cleaning and tidying up. Let’s start with the child’s room, the place that interests them most. The first step is the selection of the games: let the child select those suitable for their age, those that are outdated and those that have not been used for some time. All those belonging to the last two categories will end up in kindergartens or in Caritas and voluntary associations ”.
SOCIAL VALUE “The educational concept that must pass while cleaning together is that, for example, a game that they no longer use will make other children happy. Another value that is transmitted during these operations is the autonomy of the child (who arranges his space by himself) and respect for others: keeping your room clean also respects your little brother or whoever shares the room with him “.
SCREENING OF BOOKS “After the toys, you can move on to books: select those that are read and those that have not been browsed since time immemorial. These too are to be given to those in greatest need, or to be taken to the flea markets, always to make it clear that all objects can have a second life “.
LET’S FACE THE WARDROBE “Let’s then move on to tackle the wardrobe: by choosing the clothes to let ‘out of the house’, we can explain the concept that there are countries where children do not have books, games and clothes. Going through the clothes is also an opportunity to teach the little ones the combination of colors, how to match the garments: you don’t need complicated style lessons but a few basic concepts, such as making it clear that a birthday party or a trip to the park require different attires “.
PASS THE DUST “A simple cleaning gesture that can be done by children is to pass the dust: after having equipped the children with the right cloths and rags, you have to explain to them why we are teaching them these gestures, that is, respect for the place where they lives. ‘Would you like it if Mom left the dirty dishes on your desk?’ it is a practical example that helps “.
THE VADEMECUM “The gestures of cleaning and tidying can be organized in a small vademecum, a grid in which all the tasks to be carried out are put, such as’ making the bed ‘,’ putting away the sports bag ‘,’ put away the games’, ‘set and clear’, ‘leave the desk in place’, ‘fold clothes’. It is important that this list is made materially with them: we all sit at the desk together and discuss the tasks to be put on the list ”.
MAINTENANCE CALENDAR “Once this virtuous process has been triggered, all this work to be really useful needs a weekly appointment. A good strategy is to have the child put a star on the vademecum next to the task carried out: at the end of the established period (a week, for example) the ‘stars’ are counted and a small reward is established for the objectives achieved. It is a way to empower children through play ”.
MAPPING THE HOUSE “A step forward compared to the bedroom is to teach children to map the house: children don’t have a sense of the whole house, they don’t know that everything has a place. To help them understand this concept, make a plan of the house and explain to them where the ironing room is, what is kept in the kitchen … Starting from their bedroom you can give them a sense of the whole. This serves to explain, for example, that the hairdryer must be put back in the bathroom so the other members of the family can find it when they need it “