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Self-help station (Part 1)

So here I am on my journey to setting up a self-help station in our home. I've seen it working in other people's homes and have tried to set it up so many times but it just becomes a mess and then I take it away or give up. I ask myself, how on earth do 'they' get it to work? How do 'their' kids keep it all tidy? 

Well I'm going to share my mistakes and victories and how I get it to work. Here's a before photo:

So I guess my first thing is I look at everyone's, instagram worthy self-help stations and see everything laid out beautifully. Well for me, that hasn't worked and I am going to do what works best for our family. Asher is 16 months old and I am doing this properly. 

So I am setting up the bones of our self-help station by using a play kitchen I bought from Aldi, a low shelf and some wooden hooks. I am not putting everything out just yet but I am going to get him used to a few items and set him up for success rather than failure. I want him to learn how to use the items I have out now before I introduce more. It is up to me to model to him the correct way to use the different items, rather than just expect him to know how to use them. 

So I have set out the play kitchen. In the cupboards, it has one bowl (Wild Indiana), a suction plate (Love Charlie XO) and his snack bowl (Bbox). It also has a wooden place mat that I made, which shows where he needs to put his plate, fork, knife, spoon and cup. (I haven't put out any knives yet).

In the other cupboard, I am using a little cutlery tray that I made and it has a mix between metal and plastic spoons and forks. 

His water bottle is on a shelf for him to get water any time he needs. I want to eventually change this to a glass jug where he can pour himself water in a cup. But we aren't quite there yet!

The little shelf has a microfibre cloth to help clean up his kitchen and after he has eaten. I will add a little spray bottle of water that he can do this on his own - he loves wiping the tables when I'm spraying my Koh cleaner. There's also a little brush and dustpan on the bottom shelf, some wet wipes to clean his hands or face. And his bag and hat are hanging on a hook. I will put his shoes on the shelf too, but he doesn't really wear shoes so they'll just be there for show haha. I am planning on getting a little mirror to put up too so I can teach him about self-care and wiping his face and nose when its dirty and brushing his hair etc. 

We did some practical life skills work there today by chopping up a banana and then eating it and cleaning up. He loved it! 

Well that's it for now, I will write up a new blog as I add things and let you know how we are going. So far, I love it! 

Let me know, do you have a self-help or self-care station set up in your home? How do you find it? How old are your children? I'd love to hear!

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