It's an ideal time to talk with kids about the value of material possessions.

Do your spring-cleaning plans include decluttering your home? Or at least trying to do so? For many families, the influx of toys, clothes and other items that accompany holidays and birthdays creates worry about whether children are too focused on material possessions.

It’s a legitimate concern, child psychologists say. It takes thoughtful parenting and conversation to help children gain perspective about acquiring “stuff.” A study published in the Journal of Positive Psychology suggests that some tactics, including keeping a gratitude journal, can curb kids’ materialistic tendencies. 

The Center for Parenting Education counsels adults to make a habit of saying “no” to children and allowing them to be disappointed from time to time. The center has tips on the topic in “Shifting Your Children from Greed to Gratitude.”