5 Reasons Why Whiteboards Are The Greatest Parenting Tool Ever

by

When I think of a whiteboard, I usually think of a classroom. Or an office.

Which is why, when my kids first said they wanted whiteboards in their rooms, I wasn’t thrilled.

I have to admit, I’m big on things matching, and I liked the cloth bulletin boards filled with cute pictures they already had above their beds (the only place on their walls a big whiteboard would fit).

I didn’t think whiteboards would quite “go with the décor”.

But, remembering how much fun I had drawing and coloring on them growing up, I got over it and bought them for my kids.

It was one of the best things I ever did.

Because, over the last year, I’ve seen what an awesome parenting tool these things can be…

1. Whiteboards encourage teamwork and interaction.

kids whiteboard drawing
kids whiteboard

To see my kids sitting together, drawing pictures like these and playing games is awesome. And it sure beats TV.

2. Whiteboards help communication.

Some things are hard to say, but not as hard to write. There have been times that our kids have wanted to tell us something, but instead of saying it–maybe because it’s embarrassing or uncomfortable–they’ve asked if they can write it. How awesome that they have this alternative right next to their bed, which is where most of these conversations take place.

And my daughter, who tends to get stubborn (can’t imagine where she gets that from), and who has a hard time saying sorry (can’t imagine where she gets that from either), has used the whiteboard for this very reason. If ever we have a rough night, when I go to her room to check on her later, I often find her sound asleep with a note like this written on her board:

kids note on whiteboard

I’m glad she can get that off her chest before going to sleep. And I’m especially glad she’s nice to me 99.7% of the day. :)

3. Whiteboards are awesome for teaching.

My husband uses the whiteboard to show the kids soccer plays and math problems, and I use it to practice things like spelling. When we’re sitting on the bed with the kids, relaxed and talking, teaching somehow becomes an easy thing.

4. Whiteboards can provide a window into kids’ hearts.

kids whiteboard great God drawing

How neat to go into my kids’ rooms and find pictures and sayings like this, or little prayers and songs that they’ve written.

5. Whiteboards help parents communicate, too.

Every night, I write a new note to my kids on their boards.

Sometimes, it’s as simple as “I love you” or “You’re the best”.

But sometimes, it’s more.

Like “I’m sorry for losing my patience today.”

Or “Congratulations!” for a soccer goal scored, or a spelling test aced.

Because, in the middle of our busy days, I might forget to tell them these things. And when I go into their rooms at night, and see their sweet faces as they sleep, I’m overwhelmed with the love I have for them.

And that’s something I want them to know.

That’s something I want them to wake up to.

So if it takes a big ol’ white board smack in the middle of their wall to help me remind them, I’m all for it.

Whether it goes with the décor or not.

57 Comments on 5 Reasons Why Whiteboards Are The Greatest Parenting Tool Ever

  1. We are THAT Family
    June 27, 2008 at 5:41 pm (9 years ago)

    You just convinced me NOT to be matchy, matchy! I love this idea so much and just wrote ‘buy 2 whiteboards” on my to do list. Thank you.

    Reply
  2. carny666
    June 27, 2008 at 5:55 pm (9 years ago)

    Okay.. how about.. white board wallpaper? eh? huh? eh?

    Reply
  3. Elle
    June 27, 2008 at 6:38 pm (9 years ago)

    love it great post My kids love to draw and write, it is such a blessing in so many ways – much more important that the decor!

    Reply
  4. Shannon
    June 27, 2008 at 7:35 pm (9 years ago)

    Great idea Mom! I love it and my have to institute it with my oldest. The little ones are going to have to wait. We already had a run in with the white board markers.

    Reply
  5. C0y0t3
    June 27, 2008 at 7:45 pm (9 years ago)

    My kids have always loved white board drawing also, even our 2 year old; my kindergartner even uses a small one for spelling word practice.A tip though for when they inevitably try them out on the walls, just remember the mr. clean magic eraser is your pal.And… even though they smell strong, contrary to popular belief, they can’t get high sniffing them.BTW, welcome to reddit.com!

    Reply
  6. Gotta GROW with it
    June 27, 2008 at 7:58 pm (9 years ago)

    oh how i love this idea. i have one on my fridge but putting them in their rooms for little notes is awesome! i’m always wishing i was better at notes in their lunch boxes….this idea will work better for me. loved it!

    Reply
  7. Ian Bicking
    June 27, 2008 at 8:15 pm (9 years ago)

    I enjoy using an Aquadoodle with my nephew — we got one that just sticks to the wall, and we draw pictures back and forth. And it cleans itself up. But he also really like whiteboards — especially at a young age (he’s 2.5) a dry-erase marker is easier to manipulate than most other drawing implements.After a quick google I notice Crayola makes a washable dry-erase marker. Nice!

    Reply
  8. Mama C
    June 27, 2008 at 8:34 pm (9 years ago)

    What an awesome idea to put them in the bedrooms! I want to try that, too! We and easel whiteboard downstairs in a corner but they just use it to hide behind.Now if I could just get my 3 year old to quit drawing all over herself whenever she gets a hold of a marker….

    Reply
  9. Kristen Andrews
    June 27, 2008 at 9:18 pm (9 years ago)

    those are great! It is funny how once we become parents we learn to like things that bring our kids happiness. There are things I said I would never allow but boy have I learned to never say never.

    Reply
  10. His Girl
    June 27, 2008 at 11:15 pm (9 years ago)

    brilliant! I’m totally going to pass this idea along!

    Reply
  11. shannon
    June 27, 2008 at 11:44 pm (9 years ago)

    Taylor has a white board too, and now that you mention it, she uses it all the time for lots of different things! She loves it! But I haven’t gotten in on the action of it–you’ve given me some great ideas. And I think I’ll get one for Aly too! Thanks! :)

    Reply
  12. MeganS
    June 27, 2008 at 11:46 pm (9 years ago)

    I Love It!!! It sounds like it helps everyone… great idea, and very colorful!

    Reply
  13. megs @ whadusay
    June 28, 2008 at 12:11 am (9 years ago)

    I love this idea! My kids might be alittle young for it right now (I would be afraid they would move right off the white board onto the walls), but in a year or two – we are there!

    Reply
  14. RR Mama
    June 28, 2008 at 1:04 am (9 years ago)

    We have a white board in our kitchen. The kids love to write or draw on it. Right now it says Happy Birthday. R7 will be 8 next week!

    Reply
  15. Becoming Me
    June 28, 2008 at 1:04 am (9 years ago)

    Very sweet post and fun. We had a white board emergency of sorts today. My daughter decided to use her markers on the floor and the white fridge. She should know better, but …anyway. I learned that dry erase markers can stain non dry erase surfaces. However, I also learned that using a brillo pad ever so gently on those non dry erase spaces saves the day.

    Reply
  16. Mom and Dad
    June 28, 2008 at 2:28 am (9 years ago)

    Genny, we really enjoyed the pictures of their work! What a fun idea to share and pass on!

    Reply
  17. Laurie
    June 28, 2008 at 3:43 am (9 years ago)

    I am also vey picky about decor, but you just convinced me how great of an idea these are. I LOVE it and love the 99.7% how cute is that? I bet that made your heart skip a beat. Very cute thanks for the idea!!

    Reply
  18. Kelsey
    June 28, 2008 at 4:25 am (9 years ago)

    That is such a cute idea! I love the 99.7 percent that is too funny! I might need to pick up some whiteboards great idea.

    Reply
  19. Jackie @ Our Moments Our Memories
    June 28, 2008 at 4:33 am (9 years ago)

    I think this is one of the best ideas I have ever heard. My little one is still too little for it right now, but I’m definitely filing it away for later. Love that she’s nice to you 99.7% of the time…priceless. :)

    Reply
  20. Kristin
    June 28, 2008 at 5:55 am (9 years ago)

    Oh my gosh that’s too cute 99.7%. giggle

    Reply
  21. Tiffany
    June 28, 2008 at 7:09 am (9 years ago)

    Where did she get her math brain? I admire her ability to calculate right down to the last .7%! I love when a tool works out to serve us even better than we thought:)

    Reply
  22. JanMary
    June 28, 2008 at 7:56 am (9 years ago)

    Wonderful post. Great idea. Really got me thinking! Thanks.

    Reply
  23. The Esselman Family
    June 28, 2008 at 12:26 pm (9 years ago)

    Ok, Ok, I’m heading out to get me some whiteboards .What a neat idea!

    Reply
  24. Kelly @ Pass the Torch
    June 28, 2008 at 12:48 pm (9 years ago)

    This is absolutely true (and expertly explained!) I’ve written about white boards a lot. Who would think they’re such an excellent tool? Here was a fun conversation I had with my daughter last year on the white board: Snot Stew.

    Reply
  25. The Dishes Will Wait
    June 28, 2008 at 2:23 pm (9 years ago)

    What a cool idea! My daughter also writes on her mirror with a washable overhead marker pen – which keeps me in tune with what’s going on in her 13 year old head…..

    Reply
  26. RefreshMom
    June 28, 2008 at 4:49 pm (9 years ago)

    What a great idea! Mine aren’t big enough to read yet, but maybe my little one can draw on the white board instead of the table, the closet doors, himself….

    Reply
  27. ttelroc
    June 28, 2008 at 6:02 pm (9 years ago)

    I got a huge laugh at the 99.7% statement. How great. Love the concept, I wonder if it works for husbands??Have a Great Day!Kristin

    Reply
  28. Jamie
    June 28, 2008 at 6:42 pm (9 years ago)

    Love this! We are big into writing notes and text messages to each other in our home. I think whiteboards would be a great addition with my teens. Thanks for the super idea!

    Reply
  29. Monica
    June 28, 2008 at 6:52 pm (9 years ago)

    What an AWESOME idea! I’ll remember that for when my little ones are a little bit older!

    Reply
  30. Indy
    June 29, 2008 at 2:10 am (9 years ago)

    What a great idea. I will add this to my shopping list too. My boys are just starting to write. What a tool this will be. I can’t wait to receive the cute “letters” like the 97% note you received. Thanks for sharing this.

    Reply
  31. Lisa @ Stop and Smell the Chocolates
    June 29, 2008 at 3:31 am (9 years ago)

    That is so cute! What a wonderful tool to communicate more with our children. I am 99.7% sure that I am going to get one for my son’s room! :)

    Reply
  32. Andrea
    June 30, 2008 at 12:57 am (9 years ago)

    I love this!! I’m with you on the matching thing – but I have definitely been persuaded to be otherwise. Although, white is THE perfect accent colour!!

    Reply
  33. Becky
    June 30, 2008 at 2:44 am (9 years ago)

    I love this idea as well! Very preious and priceless!I think I will add 2 boards to my list also! Thanks for sharing this!

    Reply
  34. Jane
    June 30, 2008 at 4:20 am (9 years ago)

    This nearly brought tears to my eyes! What a wonderful thing! I will have to file this one away for when we have kids.

    Reply
  35. Linda
    June 30, 2008 at 3:00 pm (9 years ago)

    Hi, 1st time here. You are a mom-genius for doing this. I wish I had thought of it when my kids were younger.

    Reply
  36. Sandy C.
    June 30, 2008 at 10:34 pm (9 years ago)

    Those little notes and drawings are just precious! What a lovely idea. Indeed it looks like a great communication tool :) LOL at the 99.7% ;)

    Reply
  37. spaghettipie
    July 1, 2008 at 4:00 am (9 years ago)

    I love, love this idea. You know you can by whiteboard paint at your local home supply store, too? I purchased some for my daughter’s play room a while back, but haven’t had a chance to paint it yet. I really liked your #5. I watched a series by Donna Otto, and she hangs a whiteboard in her garage (I think) with a message for her husband to see when he comes home from work. She also uses one in another visible area in her home that she writes messages to visitors or family members.Thanks for the great ideas on how to use it!

    Reply
  38. spaghettipie
    July 1, 2008 at 4:02 am (9 years ago)

    PS – I just realized for some reason I did not have your blog correctly in my blog reader so I was missing posts!! Agh! Fixed now. All is right in the world. :)

    Reply
  39. Amanda
    July 1, 2008 at 9:16 pm (9 years ago)

    Too cute. Love the post.God bless-Amanda

    Reply
  40. Julie
    July 2, 2008 at 1:45 am (9 years ago)

    What an awesome idea… After 21 years of parenting why didn’t I see this sooner????I think this is a cool idea.Thanks for sharing.I found you through Angela’s (Becoming Me) blog.It’s nice to meet you..Julie

    Reply
  41. An Ordinary Mom
    July 3, 2008 at 8:14 pm (9 years ago)

    Now I know what to purchase when we get into a house hopefully next year … you and your kids are brilliant!

    Reply
  42. nicole
    July 3, 2008 at 10:52 pm (9 years ago)

    Love the messages…especially the one from your daughter…I must run to Target and get me a whiteboard.

    Reply
  43. MoziEsmé
    July 5, 2008 at 10:49 am (9 years ago)

    What a wonderful idea! Especially writing them a note each evening for them to wake up to. Definitely on my list of traditions to start, now.

    Reply
  44. Chaotic Joy
    July 7, 2008 at 4:42 am (9 years ago)

    Wow, Well who doesn’t want a whiteboard now? I want someone to put a white board over MY bed and leave me sweet love notes to find before I go to sleep. How lovely.

    Reply
  45. Stacy (mama-om)
    July 11, 2008 at 10:03 pm (9 years ago)

    I don’t think I ever commented here, but I stumbled this post I loved it so much! :)Thanks!

    Reply
  46. Elizabeth
    July 14, 2008 at 4:17 am (9 years ago)

    99.7…hehehehe…so adorable!

    Reply
  47. Mari
    July 15, 2008 at 1:57 am (9 years ago)

    I love this idea. I’m going to have to bring our whiteboard down to their level, since I never use it. Now it will be our family’s whiteboard. Great tips.

    Reply
  48. Dakotapam
    January 25, 2009 at 5:13 am (9 years ago)

    Genny, what an awesome idea…I have at least four white boards left over form my home school journey that will work fine!

    Reply
  49. KellieS
    July 21, 2009 at 6:03 pm (8 years ago)

    I use the whiteboard for my urgent to do list; when that is not working to get things done, I let my son draw on it. When we homeschooled years ago, my daughters used them all the time for projects and math problems. The visual gives learning a different perspective.

    Reply
  50. Debbie's L'Bri
    March 28, 2010 at 4:44 am (7 years ago)

    My kids do not like me telling them what jobs they have to do so, I write it on the marker board so there is no conflict. Weird because I am still telling them what to do!

    Reply
  51. Genny
    May 19, 2010 at 4:24 am (7 years ago)

    Due to spam that I keep receiving on this post, I am closing it to comments. Sorry!

    Reply
  52. Terry Bandy
    October 17, 2013 at 7:36 pm (4 years ago)

    This is a great tip especially to those new to the blogosphere.
    Short but very precise information… Thank you for sharing this one.

    A must read article!

    Reply
  53. bradley kurgis
    November 24, 2013 at 10:42 pm (4 years ago)

    This is my first time pay a visit at here and i am actually pleassant to read all at single place.

    Reply

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