The last thing kids want to do before summer vacation is clean their room. You may feel it’s easier to do the cleaning yourself, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Not only does a good summer cleaning make everyone feel better, it lays the groundwork for teaching work ethic and responsibility.
Include the kids in your summer clean, and implement a new plan that involves them in keeping it clean throughout the summer. You must set an example, be consistent and be firm in your quest for cleanliness. Here are some ideas to keep organized, cleaning options that kids will get behind and methods you can use to encourage your kids to have a tidy space.
Simplify and Organize
|A few years ago I started the kids on dusting. They clean every Saturday|
Remove the ExcessKids are stuff magnets. They are little hoarders and if you let their toys, clothes and stuffed animals pile up, it will be that much harder to get rid of the excess. Sit down with your child and evaluate their clothes, toys and other possessions. It’s important to teach kids how to let go. Motherco.com suggests you model for them thanking the toy for its service and for giving the child so much pleasure. Then say good-bye and wish it a great life. Teach your children how to help the less fortunate by donating the items they no longer need.
Break Tasks Into ChunksHave your kids complete smaller, more manageable steps to cleaning projects so they are less overwhelmed. For example, when picking up their room, have them clear off their beds first, then pile all the clothes on the bed to sort them and then hang or put them away in the dresser. Then, ask them to move toys to their respective bins, straighten stuffed animals and finish off with a vacuum.
Make it FunWhether it’s a race to see who can clean up fastest or a dancing cleanup day, kids will delight in the family activity no matter what they are doing. Role play with them that they are a cleaning company and you are a satisfied customer.
Make checklists and to-do lists so your children are able to check off accomplishments as they go. These can be boldly displayed on a dry erase board so the entire family can see who has finished each task and offer congratulations.
Change the DécorChange the décor and the way your kids look at their room. They will want to show off their cool, new space. With the massive amount of themed items available for kids' rooms, it’s likely your little one will find one that excites them. If they choose a "Star Wars" themed room, they won’t want their new Tie Fighter Gray Desk covered with clutter. Even just a fun new set of sheets or a rug will have them decluttering and organizing their items.
The 5-Minute Morning SweepEstablish daily routines. Instead of letting cleaning tasks pile up, give each family member (this includes Dad) morning tasks that can be done in five minutes. Make cleaning up a family activity before the day’s festivities begin. Whether it’s sweeping the floors, wiping down the bathroom counters or picking up the living room, get everyone involved in this daily clean sweep to keep the house tidy and to help keep mom from losing her cool.
In the end, always show appreciation for the work they’ve done. This support and encouragement will make them more likely to want to do their chores tomorrow.