Tidy Up time
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Thread: Tidy Up time

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    Default Tidy Up time

    Do you all incorporate tidy up time in to your day (for the children to do) or do you do it yourself - either throughout the day or when the kids have gone home? Also, do you think its a fair activity to ask them to get involved in? Ive started to ask the kids to do it at the end of the day or before we go out on a school run to fetch older kids for instance but wondered if im being a bit mean and worry parents will think badly of it and not see it as a worthwhile time of their kids and their money!! Any thoughts on this?

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    Tidying up is a brilliant activity for the children to be involved in - and it's often something you have to teach them to do - they don't always know instinctively how to do it.

    Break it up into small, manageable tasks, eg get one child to collect up the bricks and another to collect the cars - good sorting opportunity. Praise them when they have done it and tell them how lovely and safe the room now looks. They love responsibility.

    If they have made a lovely model they might want to display it rather than break it up and put it away, but they could put the spare bricks and the box away.

    Mine used to LOVE being given a cloth to wipe the table with, or the dust pan and brush/hand held Hoover for slightly older ones.

    When needed you could add another dimension, such as an egg timer or a song where you have to have finished before the song ends. Keep it light hearted so that it doesn't become a power struggle.

    I just used to find it tricky if my own child was still happily playing with something when the minders were nearly due to go home, then her and I would be left with the tidying up later that evening.

    What would you think if you turned up at daycare to see your son tidying up? I'm guessing you wouldn't have any negative thoughts...

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    Like Maza I think there is important learning to be had from children tidying up. Montessori encourage it too.

    All children tidy up at nursery and school too...it’s just you don’t see it when you arrive fo pick up.
    I always had a last tidy up time last thing, then we had a snack, then it was puzzles until home time.
    I encouraged tidy as we went along for general child choice activities, I liked that they linked the activities in their creative play...but once they abandoned something I would ask if this was still in play...our routine was such that they knew if I asked that ..it meant it ought to go away if it now wasn’t being played with. So not much to tidy away at the end of the day really. We had tidy up times at key points in the day, before we went out, before lunch etc...it is a key point to lay the foundations for not over consuming.

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    depending on what we are doing, we tidy up before snack time, lunchtime, afternoon school run and then just before the first set of parents are due to arrive. we then sit and read/share books, draw, listen to music & sing songs etc - something that can be quickly put away as child leaves.

    If there is a special model in creation, or a particular game being played if we can, then we save it, or in the case of marble runs after school ... we take photos !!!

    we also tidy up as we go, so if the children want a different activity out, then we tidy away the one we WERE playing with!

    I think it is important that all children learn to tidy up.

    my own children were always encouraged to tidy up, along with the minded children ( although, they did carry on playing with some toys as mindees went home, but I was always careful to make sure, that I and/or my child, wasn't putting away everyone elses toys! ) ... however !!! as teenagers, I wonder if I ever really did get them to tidy up, as neither of them seem to have the faintest idea what I mean about 'tidying up' !!! if it isn't strewn across DDs floor, then how will she know she needs to do/wear/remember XYZ ? !!!

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    We have a mantra ; choose it , use it , put it away.
    It’s usually only when it gets to the stage of things being in the way and becoming a hazard that we have a full on tidy time as I love them being able to use everything together and the way they are interweaving the various things we have out. In the main they do help tidy before meals and home time but it’s quite usual to have things they are in the middle of or want to show mummy and daddy left out at the end of the day once they’ve gone home. How disappointing it must be for them to have created their own world or creation for us to just declare tidy up time too regularly and put it all away . It’s certainly a fine line and it’s usually the child’s level of engagement that tells me whether it’s appropriate to put some things away or to leave them where they are.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mama2three View Post
    We have a mantra ; choose it , use it , put it away.
    It’s usually only when it gets to the stage of things being in the way and becoming a hazard that we have a full on tidy time as I love them being able to use everything together and the way they are interweaving the various things we have out. In the main they do help tidy before meals and home time but it’s quite usual to have things they are in the middle of or want to show mummy and daddy left out at the end of the day once they’ve gone home. How disappointing it must be for them to have created their own world or creation for us to just declare tidy up time too regularly and put it all away . It’s certainly a fine line and it’s usually the child’s level of engagement that tells me whether it’s appropriate to put some things away or to leave them where they are.
    Absolutely. The other important thing about tidy up time is to give a five minute, two minute, one minute warning (or however you choose to do it) that tidy up time is approaching. When I used to go to a Surestart playgroup one practitioner there used to really irritate me with her tidy up routine. She was absolutely lovely and an amazing practitioner in every other way. She would suddenly announce 'tidy up time' and then start tidying up by literally taking things from in front of the children and even out of their hands - paintbrushes from their hands, collecting up the blocks from their towers, taking an unfinished painting from under their nose and putting it on the drying rack, breaking up the train track etc. She obviously didn't see how disrespectful that was to the child, or what a poor example it was setting to some of the mums there who were there on referral for various parenting courses.

    Fortunately we often got a questionnaire to fill in as feedback and I mentioned it, without mentioning her name. The manager phoned me and thanked me and reassured me that they had taken it on board. From then on the staff did give a five minute warning to tidy up time. I was really happy to see that the whole process of reflecting on one's practice, working with parents/listening to their views etc can be used to really benefit the children, rather than something we do for Ofsted, or don't even do at all.

    I'm digressing now, as I do, but I really wish DD's school would give us more opportunities to provide feedback. Our Surestart group and DD's nursery were very good at it, but DD's school is really bad at it. They do have an open door policy so that you can raise concerns at any time, but I'm not one to do that (unless it is a bigger issue which directly affects DD). I like questionnaires where I can bring up lots of little things and comment on the great stuff, which I also wouldn't otherwise be able to do.

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    Thanks everyone, i love your thoughts on this x

 

 

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