Thursday, 3 September 2015

Organising a teenager

Good evening dear friends.

Ooh what a busy day it was today.  I was up nice and early so that I could have coffee and breakfast before taking a leisurely walk to work.

It was an interesting day as we had meetings most of it and we heard about any changes and the expectations of this year.

Once home, I made dinner and took the youngest three to stay at Granny's house for the night as they are not back to school until Monday.

Rather than having a nice relaxing evening reading all the interesting blogs that I have found over the last couple of months, I took it upon myself to organise my darling thirteen year old who is back to school tomorrow.

At the end of last term I received a phone call from the school telling me that he had not brought in his asthma pump recently. The school has one but there were a few incidences last year where he was unable to make it to the medical room and resulted in them having to rush a nebulised to him. So a plan was put in place for him to carry one with him and the school to have two that were kept in different places.

Following this phone call I decided to check his bag OH MY big mistake, it was horrid! His books invariably had no covers or corners, pens and pencils were all over his bag, sheets of paper were screwed up everywhere. I was shocked. I  thought at thirteen years old he was capable of organising himself. Clearly not!

We cleaned his school bag, I have not bought them new ones this year (last years are still in good condition). No need to spend unnecessary money. Then we got together all the things necessary for the start of the year.  As we put the items in his bag I listed what was enclosed and we have discussed how I am going to write him a checklist, laminate it and put it on his bedroom door. I expect him to check his bag daily to ensure that everything is in it and that it is kept tidy. I will be doing spot checks and if there are items missing or it is untidy he will lose his Xbox time that day.

I am hoping this will make him more independent and aware that he needs to look after his things.

Do you have a disorganised teenager? If so what do you do to try to make them independent and organised? I would love to hear your ideas.

Well I have packed our lunches for tomorrow (yay, for saving money) and I am off to bed.

Night, night


  1. It's a boy thing, I think! My 2 oldest were horrible at being organized... I don't even dare asking if they're better at it now that they're in college.

    My middle son was the hardest, I had gotten a book called "Helping the Disorganized Child" (I think that was the title... I just donated the book a couple of weeks ago!), which was very interesting but if the kid isn't interested in being organized, nothing will work, IMO. My son wasn't interested. I gave up and just continued nagging him to get things done instead. It made it easier for him to decide to move out once he graduated from high school, lol.

    My youngest (13) is pretty organized... and my daughter is too. But they're both messy and packrats so sometimes I doubt that they know what they're doing. However, they are miles ahead of their older brothers at the same age.

    I'm very organized, for the most part, so it drives me nuts when people aren't. I've had to learn to let it go, though, or I would have driven everyone around me nuts!

    1. Hi Nathalie, I think I do drive my thirteen year old nuts but hey ho he had better get used to it.

      My eldest is really organised so its a bit of a shock for me, he cleans up if I'm at work and his books and school bag were always organised.

      I'm so worried that if I let it go he will never cope when it comes time for him to go to university (such a stress head).

      Perhaps I should see if I can get a copy of that book. I like a good read!

      Sounds like your younger two take more after you.

      I'm a list girl, I write everything down that needs doing and tick it off as I go along that way I don't forget anything that needs doing.

    2. Lists are awesome, aren't they?! I like lists too.

      I think that if you give your teens a chance to figure things out on their own, they have a better chance at eventually succeeded than if you hold their hand for everything, but that's just my philosophy :)

      I found the exact title of the book (thanks to Amazon's "My Orders" section!) and here is the link

  2. years ago ( my son is now 27 and no longer living at home) he was unorganised, but one rule I did have was if the dirty washing was left on the floor then it stayed there and didn't get washed, if it was in the washing basket then it got washed! I think we went to Ikea and got him a nice wash basket and it worked! He was in the cadets for a while and when he left he was better at ironing his uniform that I was! Jo x

    1. I make mine take their washing down to the washing machine every day. Even the seven year old knows I will lose the plot if there is washing on the floor. My thirteen year old is thinking about joining cadets,a lot of his friends go so maybe that will help the situation. Fingers crossed xx

    2. My kids all do their own laundry. They all started when they started middle school or even earlier (I don't remember!). Right now we all do laundry once a week, at different times. I told my 13 year old that he is joining JROTC in high school next year (military prep in high school, our high school's unit is a Navy unit). One of my stepdaughters did it and was even the battalion commander in her senior year.She went to college on a full military scholarship, which she decided to drop in her senior year of college (grrr) because she didn't want to serve, after all. My oldest son also did it and, against all odds, loved it, although he chose not to join the military after high school either. Greg did it (in college too and then was in the US Army) and his grandfather and great grandfather were both in the Navy. My 13-year-old isn't a joiner and I think that being in JROTC in high school will keep him in a group environment where he will be able to develop leadership skills and that will keep him busy enough (marching, competitions, etc...) so he doesn't fall in with a bad crowd. He doesn't want to do band or sports (what my other kids, who didn't do JRTOC, did) so JROTC it is. He's not too happy with me at the moment but that's OK :) Moms know what's good for their kids, don't they? Yes, we do! But, hmm, Tara, my oldest didn't get less messy for being in JROTC, sadly. He always took care of his uniform and passed his inspections, but his room was and still is (at 21!) a war zone.