Monday, August 6, 2012

Clutter Jail

Ah, the amazing things you find on Pinterest! With the current celebration of JAM's birthday, more presents mean more clutter. Of course we appreciate all the gifts people give JAM, but 9 times out of 10 it always ends up being toys and that's more stuff that gets left around the house. JAM is at that age where he's old enough to understand the concept of responsibility. I've played around with a few different ideas on how to teach him to take responsibility for his belongings, but none of them really worked to well. So, I searched around Pinterest and found the perfect thing from iMOM! I got tired of picking up JAM's toys all over the house every night so I created the clutter jail. iMOM had a great idea to create a clutter jail for the kids items if they're left lying around and they must do a chore to earn it back. She offered free printables for it all, but her community chest chore cards to earn the items back were a little too old for JAM at the moment so I tweaked it a little.

I bought a cheap cardboard box from Walmart and printed out the free printable from iMOM. I explained to JAM that every night before I go to bed I clean up the house. While I'm cleaning, if I come across items of his that belong in his room, it'll go into the clutter jail and he'll have to do something to earn it back. I created a chore chart for him when he started Kindergarten and he started to slack on it a bit so I told him that to earn an item back from the clutter jail he must do the WHOLE day/night time chore chart for 2 days without being ask to do a job. He initially didn't take me seriously until some of his favorite things started going in the clutter jail and he complied REAL quick.

This ended up being a two birds with one stone type of deal! I got the clutter out of my living room and kitchen plus he was doing his chore chart like he was supposed to! However, as time when along, I noticed that the toys and stuff that he didn't care about much ended up getting left in the clutter jail.  *sigh* kids. So, i told him that items left in the clutter jail for more than two weeks will be donated. That definitely fixed the problem and it also helped me learn what toys he was growing out of so I did stick to my guns and donated it. All in all a great idea for this household! Let's see how long this will last until he's too old for it haha.

What type of things do you do in your household to manage the kid clutter?