Good organization skills can help make the transition from elementary school to middle school go smoother.
Help your child/children stay organized using these simple tips to make the transition less stressful and overwhelming for everyone:
1. Make organizing a part of each day. Organization is a skill that will help the middle school student succeed, not only in school but also in every aspect of their life.
• Work with them to set up systems and routines that will work for them so that they are more inclined to use and stick with them.
o For example: Set a designated place and time for homework.
2. Don’t insist that they get organized your way. There are as many different organizational systems. You just have to find one that works for your child.
• Enlist your child’s help. The idea is to help them discover a way that works for them. Too much “guidance” from you can cause conflict. Offer some options and brainstorm some ideas together.
o For example: Figure out a calendaring system with them so that they’ll use it to stay up to date on their assignments.
3. A place for everything and everything in its place. At home, they should have a place for all of their belongings, not just schoolwork.
• Educate them/show them how to pick-up after themselves. It is important that they pick up their things and return them to their proper place when they’re done using them.
o For example: Pick a place that will work for them to leave their backpack so that they don’t forget it when they leave in the morning. Perhaps a hook in the mudroom…
4. Be a role model. Practice what you preach and lead by example.
• Stay organized at home to lead by example.
o For example: Keep a family calendar.
5. Be there for your child.
• Offer support by checking in to see if they need help with homework. Remember that students in middle school need to become independent so don’t supply them with the answers.
o For example: If you see that they’re not able to keep up, hire a tutor before they fall too far behind
Bottom line is that being organized will make their life and yours so much easier!