The Buy In
Kids love to play. They particularly love to play outdoors, but in the dead of winter, they are often confined indoors. This means that they will be hauling out all their toys to occupy their time and attention. Then at the end of the day you end up in a struggle with the kids about cleaning up the mess they have made. In Summer, all the toys and sports equipment come out of the garage and end up strewn all over the yard. The whole confrontation of getting the kids to clean up their own mess will go much more smoothly if you create a special place for each of the items they have taken out. Make it a game. Kids love games. They will get on board with your agenda if you can find ways to make the clean up fun.
Have a plastic storage bin that they can gently toss their blocks into. Divide the blocks into even piles for each of the kids and the first one who gets all their blocks into the container wins some kind of prize or treat.
Kids Need a Special Place for All Their Stuff
Make sure there is plenty of room to put all of the toys away. Kids can’t keep their spaces clean if there is nowhere to put things away. Shelves are a great idea to keep things tidy. You can buy containers that will hold legos, blocks, matchbox cars and other small pieces. Children as young as two can help you clean up. Closets should have bars low enough for little ones to reach them. That way kids can be responsible from a young age for keeping their clothing neat and hung up.
Rather than have stuffed animals strewn everywhere, line them up on shelves or buy a small hammock for them and string it across a corner of the kids’ rooms. Use a hanging shoe holder (the kind with pouches for the shoes) and hang it low enough for the kids to be able to reach several rows up. They can tuck all kinds of toys, dolls etc. in those pockets. Make room on a shelf for games, hopefully with all their parts. And, of course, books will also be on a shelf.
Make cleaning a game, for instance, my grandkids love Mr. Clean Magic Erasers. When they were about five I would give them each a dampened eraser and send them on a hunt for marks on my walls. They loved It!
If you get the kids started with keeping their things neat and tidy, they will hopefully carry that habit on through their life.
While you are training your children to pitch in and help keep their spaces neat and clean, call Custom Maid to help with your weekly house cleaning. Call us TODAY at 499-8568!
Editor’s Note: We originally published this article in February 2016. We have edited it for freshness, accuracy and comprehensiveness.