I recently read the book The Organized Student by Donna Goldberg. I loved this quote from her book: " Many educators and parents have learned to recognize deficiencies in reading, writing, and math, but not in organization."
I could not agree with this more! Teachers are trained to look for signs of MAJOR problems... often overlooking an unorganized student as simply... messy. The fault is not that of the teachers... they are trying to manage twenty plus children and make sure that they are able to learn at the level with their peers. I would love to see organization skills integrated into the curriculum of upper level elementary and Middle school as they often do with study skills. The National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) has seen the same need, recently launching the NAPO in the School program. Professional organizers, myself included, can become certified to present a standardized program to elementary school classrooms in their area.
It is never to early to start children and students on the path to organization... because being organized is a lifelong need to be as successful as possible. Which means that the other half of the responsibility for teaching our children to be organized falls on the parents. Often times, parents are quick to just do it ourselves. I know I too have been guilty of this... instead of fighting with kids to pick up their messes, do their chores, or make their beds... we just do it for them.
Unfortunately we have to remember as parents we are supposed to be teaching them about responsibility and making them do these simple things is a great way to introduce many organizational and life skill concepts to them.
In light of back to school time... I think it is important for teachers and parents to bear in mind that if a child is struggling in school simply because they are not organized... it is time to do an organization intervention! Messy lockers, backpacks, and bedrooms can lead to late assignments, lost library books, missing projects, lost time searching for or redoing assignments, and a great deal of frustration for student, teacher, and parents!
Often these problems can be solved with time, planning, and organization to help your student be better prepared for classes and assignments. Do your kids a huge favor this school year... help them be as successful as they can be by helping them get more organized. If you need help with this... I highly recommend the book I just finished, The Organized Student by Donna Goldberg!
If you desire one on one help contact a professional organizer in your area, the NAPO website can refer you to one if you need just visit http://www.napo.net/. In SW Missouri contact us, Simple*Organized*Sanity professional organizing at http://www.simpleorganizedsanity.com/ and we would be happy to help your student get on the path to an organized school year!