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How to get your kids to clean

Most parents wonder why their children are such messy little beings.  Here are some tips to help your kids learn to get and stay organized:

Help your children learn good cleaning habits by being neat and tidy yourself.  Hanging up clothes and putting things away after you use them sets a good example for children to follow.

  • Have your children decorate boxes, baskets, and plastic tubs for toy storage so that they will be personalized and encourage use.

  • Plastic tubs can be stored under beds and in closets.  Decorated baskets and shoe boxes look great on bookshelves.  Keep board games on shelves, small toys in small containers, medium sized toys in medium size containers, and reserve toy boxes for large items.

  • Make it a habit to take five minutes before bedtime for everyone (even the adults) to put their “stuff” away.  Praise your children for keeping their toys and books organized, and be certain to have them note how nice it is to wake up in a clutter free home!

  • Store half of your children’s toys and switch them around every few months. They’ll have “new” toys to play with and will be able to keep fewer toys organized.

  • While you are going through the toys to store, have your children pick out some that they don’t play with anymore. Pack these up and donate them to the Good Will or Salvation Army.  Bring the children with you to drop off the donations so they can see their charity put into action.

  • Put hooks and pegs on the backs of room door and on the insides of closet doors for quick hang-ups when the children come in.

  • Assign each child a different color towel and make sure they hang it up after every use. Explain that this not only keeps the bathroom clean, it saves water making your home a “greener” environment.

  • Have a sock-sorting-party!  First sort into piles of colors, then teach the children how to match and fold pairs of socks.  Everyone sorts one of the colored piles into baskets by size.  After all the socks are matched put singles back into a basket for the next party.

  • Next, teach the children to fold their own socks and underwear while you fold the laundry!  Everyone should have their own laundry basket for this chore.

  • Let the children help you in the kitchen. They can wash vegetables while you prepare meat for cooking; set the table while you chop veggies; help clean the table while you load the dishwasher.  Don’t expect perfection, but always praise them for helping out!

  • Let children listen to music while they are cleaning.  If they don’t have iPods, play a cd everyone likes and take breaks to dance a bit!

  • Set aside a period of time each week for children dust and vacuum their rooms, clean under the beds etc… To set a good example, be certain to clean your room at the same time!  Make a game out of it with a timer and be certain to schedule quality family time after as a reward.  Keeping their room clean will become a good habit and something to celebrate.

Here are some great books for you and your children to read:


Read our next Blog - "How to Hire Domestic Help"


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