Cleaning feels like an endless task. An endless task which feels like you battle all by yourself on a daily. Who couldn’t use a hand with all the cleaning that needs to be done throughout the house? And why go through that burden by yourself when there are small helping hands that we assign tasks to that we don’t want to do ourselves. Regardless of self-interested motives, it’s always a good idea to teach kids how to clean their own living spaces. Not only will these skills serve them throughout their lives, but it also makes your life a bit easier.
Cleaning will already feel like a chore to kids, so why not make it fun? Here are 10 ways to make cleaning exciting for your kids:
1. Friendly Competition – This one works best with two or more kids. Give each one a designated area to put their toys away and start a timer and see who can put away the most toys. The competition feels like a game and the floor will be clear in no time.
2. Let them Clean what they Enjoy – If your child likes to sweep, then teach them the right way and encourage him/her to do it often. My daughter growing up enjoyed putting big gloves on and washing the dishes (can you imagine!? (heart eyes). So what did I do? I bought her some pretty pink gloves and praised her clean dishes.
3. Music! – The power of music should never be underestimated. I refuse to clean in silence. It’s not enjoyable for me, so I know it must not be enjoyable for kids. If I am not blasting Beyonce then I am listening to a podcast. With kids, have their favorite songs playing or a dedicated cleaning playlist. Have fun!
4. Incentivize/ Rewards – We all like to be rewarded for our hard work. Let your kids know their exact rewards when they finish and always follow through on your rewards. Unless you plan on going to Disney soon then don’t use it, no one likes false promises.
5. Make it a Habit – Establishing a set schedule on one day of the week can be apart of the household routine. Make it clear and easy for every child (and husband) to participate. Getting kids in a habit of even daily 10 minutes clean-ups would be beneficial as they get older as well.
6. Beat the Clock Game – Games are always fun to play so why not create a cleaning game? where there is a set timer and the task must be completed before the clock rings. This can work for toy pick-ups, laundry, room clean-ups.
7. Get Creative – What are some tips and tricks that make cleaning more fun for you? There’s this little game of ‘mystery cleaning cup’. Where I wrote unique chores on popsicles sticks and had each kid pull one out of a cup. The surprise and mystery I add to the fame make it more enjoyable for kids to “play”. Think outside of the box and ask some friends and family.
8. Participate – There is no “I” in team. If all of the team members aren’t participating then the team loses motivation. You’re in it together, engage!
9. Be Specific – Sometimes “clean your room!” isn’t enough clarity for kids. Give them more direction when it comes to teaching kids to clean. Some more specifics could be:
– make your bed
– put your toys in the bin
– dust the blinds
-put your clothes in the dresser.
The more specific, the less confusing.
10. Give them their Own Tools – Just as I gave my daughter her own set of pink gloves, you can get your child a mop, dustpan, broom, spray bottle with natural diluted cleaner. Remember back when you were a child and you use to pretend to play house? This is the same concept. Let your child play “house” or even play adult. Then, as they grow older the more engaged they will be in cleaning up after themselves.
If you have time left, help them to clean the basement.
Dont forget positive reinforcement. Kids will continue to do a task if they’re thanked and acknowledged for their efforts. They may not get everything exactly how you like it, but hey that’s why we are here! ️ ️
Drop a comment below on your favorite method of making cleaning fun for kids!