Creating a Clothing Station for your Child/ren

by Christine@TheAums on January 6, 2011 · 10 comments

Today’s post is inspired by two sister blogs.  First, we have Mom of 6, where Sharon Rowley, my fellow iVoice in New York,  answers the question, “How do you do it?” I only have 4 kids, but I am often asked the same question and it is often preceded by, “Are you crazy?!”.  I can only imagine the systems of organization Sharon has in place for her large brood.

Next, we have A Living Family where Sheila blogs in detail about the journey toward creating a family and community in which to thrive.  What I appreciate most about her blog is how she lays it all out for the world to see. Her goals and progress, or lack thereof, are no secret.

So, I am combining Mom of 6’s ‘How do you do it?’ with A Living Family’s recent goal to create a clothing station for her 1 year old daughter.

First, one thing that many people notice about my children is their independence.  This makes me happy because fostering independence is at the hub of my parenting goals.  It doesn’t matter how many children you have, enabling them to do for themselves is a win-win situation for the entire family, and the more kids you have, the more their independence will be forced nurtured by older siblings and parents alike.  We “crazy” moms of many know that giving our kids opportunities to learn independent self-care skills will make them bug you less feel important and capable which in turn leads to more twitter time for you healthy self-esteem and a strong sense of self-confidence. Hear, hear!

With that said, How do 4 children share one room, or more importantly, one closet?
Original label artwork by my brother-in-law.

Not too long ago, I had one child and very early on I gave him 3 drawers that sat on the closet floor.  I labeled one pants, another shirts, and the last Pjs.  I also included his name and drew pictures of the items on each one.  Not only was I creating a  print-rich environment, I was giving visual clues to help my son learn the system.  Turns out I was also providing a low-mess, accessible dumping and filling activity. When it was time to put clean clothes away, we first sorted his pile into the 3 categories, then we opened whichever drawer together, stuffed the clothes inside, and closed it.  I did this with my son frequently back then, when putting clean clothes away was easier.  At this point, I didn’t worry about folding and I still don’t.  My first son is now 6.5 years old and he has taken on folding all on his own, just from watching me fold my own clothes.

When baby #2 came along, I decided to stick with this clothing system, only I bumped his big brother up one level to accommodate his taller height and to give him a sense that he’s moving up in the world, literally! Fast forward to today and we have 4 levels of drawers!  And let me boast tell you, my 19 month old daughter will open the correct drawer when we’re putting her clothes away and will bring me a pants-and-shirt outfit that she wants to wear almost daily.  If we’re not paying attention looking, she may even attempt to dress herself with successful results!
The Aums Clothing System…that’s catchy!
As part of my goal to increase and practice our Spanish vocabulary,  baby #4 got labels en español!
Stay tuned for a post on letting kids hang their own clothes, too!
Let’s face it, I may dream of nice furniture for my kids’ room, a wooden armoire or dresser perhaps, but the reality is plastic, stackable drawers.  And it works…with 1 child or more!
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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

unkl steve January 6, 2011 at 2:20 pm

what a great picture you paint with words. i can see your family home and i've never even been there. your writing makes me smile.


alivingfamily January 10, 2011 at 1:48 pm

you are a genius! my attempt at a clothing station gave me lots of areas for improvement. you have given me solutions! if only i had a family member who could draw so well….i might have to get my students on the job! ; )

also, this post is so fun and clear. thank you for helping us all!


Christine January 14, 2011 at 6:49 am

"alivingfamily" Glad to hear this helped…thanks for inspiring me to break down how we do it in our family. I'm sure you'll find something that works for yours, and I want to know about it!


Mama J@Mama, Hear Me Roar May 9, 2012 at 11:48 am

Christine, you are a bona fide genius! I have to try this soon!
Mama J@Mama, Hear Me Roar recently posted..The hour when Mother napsMy Profile


Christine@TheAums May 9, 2012 at 7:45 pm

Hey there! Thank you so much….please share pictures of the results if you do!


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