Here’s a little wardrobe management tip for those of you with kids young enough to instill some positive, early habits that will serve you all well through high school (hopefully).
With all four of my kids, I have found much success with starting them young on appropriate clothing selection. I’m sure another mother gave me this sage advice but with old age comes a fleeting memory.
Early, before our kids’ school went to uniforms (amen – I’m a huge uniform advocate – I would lobby for them in any school at any age!) we selected school clothes and after school/weekend clothes. Initially, we had separate drawers but then I found this marvelous invention.
Don’t ask me why there is a teddy bear in the Monday cube. I guess you can use it to sort toys?
There were several reasons this system worked great for us:
- It eliminated any early morning battles because mama doesn’t function well in the morning.
- It established a night time routine where they always needed to have their outfit ready for the next day including shoes and socks.
- It was visual so dad could handle the system when mom wasn’t home.
- It set clear expectations for what they could and couldn’t wear to school.
- It was non-negotiable.
We did allow them to have a few of the character or shirts with writing that were not deemed appropriate for school. Nothing mean or nasty, mind you. Rather, the humorous or smartie pants shirts that I’m sure you’ve all seen.
They could wear these on the weekends or they could be sleep shirts.
Side note: The Grunter might just have a shirt that says “I love my wie#%r” with a graphic of a wiener dog. Ann’s son might have received the same shirt as a birthday gift from our family. I’m just saying they might…
I’ve had lively discussions with other mothers about their strong belief in letting their children pick out there own clothes and express their individuality.
Lucky for all of us, we all live in the land of the free and are entitled to our opinion.
Here is mine.
Forget about expressing their individuality. I always said they have PLENTY of time to do that when they get home and on the weekends. Make teachers’ lives easier. The clothing kids are wearing these days is ridiculous.
In addition, uniforms eliminate stress and the competition at school over labels and brands which I’ve always found ridiculous.
Did my kids love uniforms? No. Did I care? No.
They aren’t suppose to love everything. They don’t really love the uniforms they are required to wear for their part-time jobs. They aren’t really allowed to express their individuality at work either. Go figure.
This is the first year that I don’t have any kids in uniforms. I’m grateful that the clothing system was ingrained early in the big kids’ lives. The girls have their outfits out the night before and it is a huge timesaver since they leave the house at 6:30 a.m. (However, they have abandoned their cube organizer.)
Scary Baby has her organizer hanging in the corner where dad mounted it so we can all see that she has her outfit ready. It’s a great week if she actually picks her outfits for the whole week on Sunday night but that doesn’t always happen.
Many stores sell these great organizers. Try Target or Kohl’s.
If your school doesn’t require uniforms, you as the parent, can and should go over what clothing is appropriate for school and then stick to it.
Every school has a dress code and adhering to that dress code is the responsibility of all of us.
From elementary to high school, I continue to be shocked and appalled at some of the “get-ups” I see kids go to school in.
Our kids’ job is to go to school and be a student. Our job as parents is to make sure they are dressed appropriately and I don’t think that should be the subject of a big debate.
Common sense is the answer.
That’s my opinion…what’s yours?