Organized vs. Disorganized, Part Three

“So how do I discover my child’s real organizational style when the bedroom organizinglooks like cyclone central?  Why can’t my child just use my organizational style?”  Most likely we’ve all thought these comments (if not said them out loud) multiple times…it’s okay…take a deep breath!  🙂  As parents, we do our personal best to teach our child how to organize, usually in the way we organize.  The real problem is our way may not be his or her way and it simply doesn’t work.  Each brain organizes and recalls information in different ways.

In the book, Kutscher and Moran note that we organize with three basic styles:

  1. Visual Organizers:  need to have everything visible; have to see things in order to find them; respond to color, pictures, and other visual cues; remember where things are based on where they last saw the item.
  2. Spatial/Cozy Organizers:  need to have everything within reach when doing schoolwork; need a work space area to “feel good” before they can start work; like to move through dance, drama, music; when the work area is a mess, they are a mess; remember where things are based on where they last used the item.
  3. Chronological/Sequential Organizers:  access information in a set order; think with numbers; remember dates, times, order of things; keep stacks at their work space; look at details; feel messy when the work area is not in order; remember where things are based on the time they last used the item.

Some of us will recognize one strong style in ourselves and in our child; others will panic and see two styles…there is nothing wrong with having a combination!  A common combination we see in school is a visual-spatial style where children like puzzles, have a great imagination, are sensitive to their feelings, and have a poor sense of time.

So, how do we fine-tune organizational techniques?  In the next section, the authors share ways to choose and set up supplies to meet the child’s organizational style.  Here’s hoping once you recognize the organizational style, you can begin to embrace a new way of working successfully within your child’s world.  Just remember:  In raising a child, the days are long, but the years are short!  🙂

Note:  We will celebrate our annual 3M Day on Friday…Marvelous Miller Math!  We hope you join us for the mathematical festivities that morning!

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