This post has been sponsored by Glad Black Bag, but all opinions are my own.
I was just talking with a friend on Sunday about the fact that getting kids to clean up their messes doesn’t get easier as they get older. We both had really hoped that it would. When the kids were little, I used the excuse of age and maturity (or lack of both) to explain why it was so difficult to motivate the kids to clean up. Now, they’re plenty old enough…but it appears that it is never going to be as easy as I would have hoped.
An example: Every day when the kids come home from school, they have two jobs – homework and dishes. I remind them every single day. The expectation is the same every day and yet…I have to pester them every day. If I don’t remind them, the jobs don’t get done.
So how can moms make cleaning more fun to motivate the kids to help out more at home? Here are just a few tips that we’ve used to make it easier – and dare I say FUN – for the kids to help with the cleaning at home.
6 Tips to Make Cleaning Fun for Kids
Now, remember that I just complained about how it’s STILL difficult to get my kids to clean without being coerced. We’re far from perfect! But these are the tricks that we’ve used successfully to make cleaning a little easier to manage.
- Play music. Make cleaning a sing-along, dancing PARTY!
- Join in with the kids and work together. My kids always respond so much better when they are cleaning WITH us and not being made to feel like a slave.
- Teach them the correct way to clean things. Knowledge is power. Knowing the right way to do something and being able to see that they’ve accomplished something productive in the end makes a huge difference in kids’ attitudes about cleaning.
- Give them age-appropriate responsibilities. Make sure that the jobs they are asked to do are things that they can accomplish with success. Make sure that it’s easy for kids to figure out where toys and other knick-knacks belong so it’s easy – and not a dreaded chore – to tidy up.
- Clean regularly. The more frequently you clean, the lighter the job will be each time. Once, years ago, my daughter complained that Saturday was the WORST day of the week. What a sad thing for a kid to say! Why did she feel that way? Because we saved all of the cleaning for Saturdays. Blah!
- Rewards never hurt! At our house, cleaning up and contributing to the household chores is something that is expected of everyone. My kids, like most other kids, love watching TV and playing on the Wii or the iPad. When they ask if they can play a game after school I happily tell them, “Sure! Is your homework done, have you unloaded the dishes, and have you picked up all of your things in the family room?” When they want to watch a movie or a show at night, they are welcome to watch while they sort or fold laundry.
Glad Black Bags make taking care of your messes fun, and the cheerleaders and gymnasts in the video sure make cleaning up look fun!
How do you make cleaning more fun – or at least more manageable – at your house?
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