It’s almost done! That’s right Jude’s Rustic Adventure Room is almost ready to reveal. Every week for the past 5 weeks I have shown you what we have been doing in his room for the ONE ROOM CHALLENGE, an event where bloggers are given 6 weeks to do a full room makeover, hosted by Linda from Calling It Home. We’ve shown you the original design plan here and the whimsical framed feature wall mural plus the easy wooden window cornices and an amazing faux fireplace with wood that really crackles. This week I wanted to show you the last big project; the toy chest makeover and the gallery wall. However, this post is so much deeper than a wall and a chest, it’s about designing spaces for kids to build security and self-confidence.
Before we look at all the pretty pictures I want to talk about something a little deeper. One of the most important things I learned in my 20 years of working with children in childcare centers, in their homes and in my own home as a nanny, is the importance of personalizing spaces just for them. When a child feels connected to their surroundings it provides them with a sense of security, belonging and self-confidence. Did you know that?
In the first post of this series, we discussed the importance of decorating kids’ rooms with their help. Now I want to talk about why it is so important to bring in items to the design that help create a connection for your child to his or her space. In childcare classrooms one way we do this is by making sure that each child has their name throughout the room. Their names are located on cubbies, baskets, hooks, notebooks and more. Why? First, so that they know where their stuff goes but secondly so they feel a sense of belonging and ownership to their classroom.
DESIGNING SPACES FOR KIDS TO HELP BUILD CONFIDENCE AND SECURITY:
- Personalized Items
- Heirloom Furniture
- Positive Messages
- Personal Belongings from loved Ones
- Their Own Artwork or Creations
To create a sense of belonging in a child’s bedroom you can use monogrammed pillow cases like these or create a custom story pillow just like the one pictured above. There are so many options out there to personalize art, wall decor, pillows, blankets and chairs! Check out a bunch of ideas HERE, my favorite is the great indoors sleeping bag!
PHOTOGRAPHS AND POSITIVE MESSAGES
The very first thing we always asked parents to do when a new child came into our class was to send in photos of their family. We wanted each child to know that we loved them and their family. Having photos of the child, their siblings and parents helped create that warm feeling and security for each child while they were away. Now, I know in your home you are there but having photos in your child’s room reminds them that they are a part of something bigger…. a FAMILY! And what better way to feel a sense of belonging and love than to be part of a family!
Bringing in art with positive messages or love, excitement and hope help a child to know that they are supported and loved! Even if you say it every day reading it and having messages of love in their room really do help build self-confidence. We do this all the time in early childhood environments! Here are some of my favorite inspiring artwork pieces for kids.
PERSONAL BELONGINGS, HEIRLOOM FURNITURE, AND THEIR OWN CREATIONS
Lastly, I love to bring in really personal items that are from loved ones or from the child! In Jude’s gallery wall, the painting of the Oriel bird is by his late Grandfather. It’s a great way to keep his memory alive. Just the other day Jude asked what the letters LEC on the artwork. I explained they stood for his Grandfather’s name, and it was a great time to recollect memories of his Granddad and how much he loved art, just like Jude.
The gray chest has been in our family for 14 years now. It was Gavin’s when he was born and has been painted many times! But none-the-less it is very special to us and has many stories behind it! Using furniture that has been in your home for years really helps a child feel safe and secure. It’s like always having an old friend by your side!
Lastly, when designing spaces for kids, adding your child’s own creations to their room really helps with confidence and self-worth. In our classroom, each child had their very own special space to hang anything that they wanted to. They also could display their art or other creations throughout the room. Giving kids the chance to add their own creations really solidifies that this is where they belong and are excepted!
Now on another note! I know you are dying to know if that cool “J” marquee letter lights up! AND the answer is “IT DOES” and apparently the blanket likes to do a little “gig” as well. (Jude’s words… not mine!)
If you want to see what the other participants are doing in the challenge click here! And catch up on all of the Adventure Room post below!
Week 4 Easy DIY Faux Fireplace
Week 5: Designing Spaces for Kids to Provide Security and Self-Confidence (Gallery Wall)