When it comes to organization there is no perfect age to start. Some children start getting organized at two-years-old when their parent or teacher emphasizes the benefits or putting away the coloring supplies. Others don’t begin to focus on organization until they leave the single classroom environment of elementary school and enter the departmentalized structure of middle or high school. Still others never truly learn key organization skills, which can greatly hinder future success.
While it is a great life skill to teach your child the benefits of cleanliness at any age, our recommendation is to focus on developing organization habits when a student’s schedule or workload becomes more complex, which happens most often during the elementary to middle school transition. Until middle school most students are placed in single classroom environments and taught by one teacher. That teacher is responsible for helping the students accomplish their academic assignments – math, English, history, etc. are all managed under one roof. When students move to the departmentalized world of middle or high school the responsibility to stay organized shifts from the teacher to the student. The problem is there are no lessons on how a student should approach this daunting task. For some it comes naturally, but for many it does not.
While time management skills have always been a hinderance for many students it is becoming an even more daunting task with the rise in digital platforms. Gone are the days of one binder per class. Now a student must manage binders, numerous Google Classrooms, a slack channel, a class portal, and the list goes on. Combine this with the lack of time management education and many children are set up for failure as they enter adolescence.
Thus, our recommendation is to focus on developing organization habits when a student’s schedule or workload becomes more complex, which happens most often during the elementary to middle school transition. It is a time of natural change thus it is also a natural time for a guardian or coach to step in and teach children how to manage their time and get organized.
One of the best tools to build organizational habits is a planner, which you can find in any Target. If you prefer to build your students planner online, you can use the VIINKO software.