Big families mean big space, or at least more space. While it is true that the larger a family the more square feet you need, it is possible to save space in many ways. One of those ways is the bedroom or the number of bedrooms needed for a big family.
Many times people prefer having bedrooms for all the kids versus sharing. There are many advantages to sharing bedrooms for kids. It creates special bonds and helps educate on many social lessons from an early age. Kid’s develop essential skills such as sharing and self-expression. Of course if kids are in the same room, their toys and other belongings are kept together. It is easy to see where this can lead to a fight or two…or ten. However, this is another area where kids are learning to exist with other people and start to learn how to resolve conflicts without throwing Matchbox cars at each other.
Optimizing space within the bedroom is another aspect that is tricky at times. If you are fortunate enough to have one bedroom that is larger than the others, consider this one for siblings who are sharing. Bunk beds are a key consideration in the optimizing the room. Bunks come in all sorts of shapes and sizes these days, and a person can find some very creative ideas with a simple search on their computer. In my household, there are three boys in one room. Granted it is the larger of the bedrooms, but we found that a bunk bed with a single put next to it creates a comfortable and space savvy sleeping arrangement. At one point there were two bunks put next to each other to create the affectionately titled “super bed,” but super beds create the idea of super heroes who leap tall buildings and throw bad guys off them. You can imagine the chaos that ensued. Needless to say super bed is no more.
Clothes for many kids is a major challenge. Clothes need to be put somewhere. Having two or three kids in a room with two or three dressers takes up major retail property. There are a couple options to tackling this. One is to be minimalists on the amount of clothes coming into the home, which is a good idea anyway. The other is to consider the idea of the “family closet.” This is the concept of having all the clothes, for all the kids, in another place, usually the laundry area. It sounds bizarre maybe. At least I thought it did, but it really works. I will tackle ideas and set up for this in another article, but for now think about the amount or room that is gained by being able to remove a couple dressers from a room. In addition to the clothes, you remove a lot of surface space where kids have tendencies to pile stuff.
Playing and Cleaning
Speaking of “stuff,” kids have tons of it. From toys to papers to projects, it piles. Regular maintenance of a bedroom for any child is good, with more than one it’s essential. Bins for organization work well for items such as Legos and puzzles. Closet space (now without clothes) could be optimized to house whatever you want. Whether it is games or light sabers, being able to transform closet space in to “stuff” housing is beneficial. One thing to look out for is cleaning time. It is interesting that with three kids in a room nobody makes a mess, yet the room is always messy. We are investigating the true source. We have ruled out Leprachauns and ghosts, but are currently considering house elves.
There are benefits and challenges to room sharing. It does create bonds with those kids that may not be seen otherwise. It gets harder as they get older and feel increased need for space, but with some cooperation and good planning it works very well.