How Your Child's Bedroom Can Impact Their Development
Kids spend more time in their homes than anywhere else, and more than half the time, they're in their bedrooms either sleeping, reading or playing, among other activities. Having a personal space to call their own, whether a separate room or part of a bedroom shared with a sibling, is crucial to your child's development and personality.
The Importance of a Child's Room
A child's bedroom offers developmental benefits that kids can't really get elsewhere. Outside of daycare or school, children spend their time in spaces created for adults. Bedrooms for kids should make them feel independent, safe and comfortable to foster learning and growth.
Kid-friendly bedrooms should provide more than just a place to sleep. A well-designed layout allows kids to learn, express themselves, and develop the skills they'll need later in life. From staying neat and organized to fostering study and self-reflection, children's rooms play an important role in how toddlers, tweens and teens grow and thrive.
One of the earliest lessons kids can learn from their bedrooms is tidiness. Getting kids involved in organizing their toys and putting clothes away from a young age helps set the stage for lifelong habits. Encouraging kids to take care of their things, participate in daily cleaning and even tackling smelly odors in their rooms enforces the concept of taking care of their personal space and belongings.
Kids grow up in a world designed for adults. Their bedrooms are the one place they can call their own, and it's important to let them express themselves. Start by including kids in decorating decisions on wall paint, accents and furniture in their rooms. Support their interests with toys, wall murals or decals, fun posters or bedding with motifs related to the things they love.
When children are old enough to play on their own unsupervised, encourage kids to enjoy their alone time and appreciate privacy for themselves and respect other people's needs for personal space. This concept becomes particularly important in teen rooms. As tweens cross the threshold into their teenage years, they're likely to crave privacy and spend more time on their own.
Reflection is a crucial part of developing emotional intelligence. Kids often use their bedrooms as a place to figure out who they are as people and how they relate to others. Whether they're considering their likes and dislikes, struggling with a challenge or gaining confidence by practicing a skill, kids need a quiet place to self-reflect, ponder questions and choices, and cope with life's ups and downs.
Taking responsibility for their space, belongings and activities is a fundamental part of kids having their own bedrooms. Bedrooms help define a child's sense of responsibility, from keeping their things tidy to getting ready for school on time and prioritizing academic study or practice for extracurricular activities. Over time, kids often build their own routines within the comfort of their rooms.
From playdates to sleepovers, your kids' room will become a social hub sooner than you think. Parents can foster social skills and friendships by adding furnishings like bunk beds to accommodate overnight guests or providing bean bag chairs and a gaming console so your child can have fun with their buddies on the weekends.
Tips for Helping Your Child Thrive in Their Room
Of course, kids don't know how to create a room that fosters their development, so it's up to parents to plan a kid's bedroom that supports the traits and skills children need to reach their full potential. Consider the size of your child's room or shared space and then plan accordingly to include the factors listed below:
- Furnishings: The tricky part of furnishing a kid or teen bedroom is fitting everything they need in their room. Planning with kid-sized furniture makes it easier, but you need to ensure your child has a comfortable place to sleep, play, and learn at any age. Don't forget to add chairs so friends can socialize, and make sure you have a desk and chair set up even for younger kids.
- Color: When choosing colors for a child's bedroom, you'll want to avoid bright overstimulating hues and select tones that match their personalities. While blues and pinks are classic boys' and girls' room colors, soothing green, pale apricot or lovely lilac might be more appropriate for your unique kid. Ask your child about the colors they like, but go easy on bold hues or darker tones.
- Storage & Organization: If you want your kids to keep their rooms neat, make sure to give them plenty of storage furniture, hooks and shelves to use. Child-size dressers, cubbies and toy chests help little ones start their organization habits early, too.
- Lighting: From overhead lighting to floor lamps and strings of fairy lights, there are several approaches you can take when illuminating kids' bedrooms. Choose lights based on purpose, like ceiling fixtures, nightlights, and reading or desk lamps, before selecting more whimsical options.
- Learning: Kids of all ages need a table and chair in their room. Toddlers develop fine motor skills by drawing and finger painting, and school-aged children need a study space as well as a place to keep a journal, practice an instrument or work on personal projects.