Have you ever looked at your kid’s room and the mess everywhere and wondered how you were going to have time to clean it all up?
If you are one of those parents that does your kid’s cleaning for them or just leaves them to keep their room in whatever state they wish, you have probably wondered how you can get your kid involved in cleaning on their own.
That may seem like an impossible task, but you might not have the right idea about how to get started and how to keep your kids involved in tidying their room.
We have a few tips we want to share with you about incentivizing your kids to do cleaning for themselves. We hope some of these will be a help to you to get your kids to clean their rooms.
Ways to Get Your Kids to Clean Their Rooms
by Margaret Latham
Reward and Punish
Your kids need to know that there are benefits to keeping a room clean and downsides to having a messy room. You can make these benefits and disadvantages more tangible to them by rewarding them when they do a good job and punishing them when they don’t.
Here are some examples of what you could do. You could give your kid a list of things to do, and if they do not get them done, then you can cut out video game or television time for the week. You could also cut their allowance or take away other things that they value. Be sure to follow through on any warnings you give your kid, as they will not take you seriously otherwise.
To reward your kid for a job well-done, you can give them a dessert for supper, allow them a bit of extra game or television time or do other small things that they enjoy as a reward for their behavior. Eventually, you want to get to where you no longer need to offer these incentives, as your children should be able to realize for themselves the natural pros and cons of having either clean or dirty rooms.
Create a Clean-up Checklist
Many times, kids will forget all the instructions you give them. They may remember bits and pieces, but their minds are going a mile a minute, and they may not pay attention to all that you say, no matter how much they love and respect you. You can give them a friendly reminder of all they need to do in checklist form. Just write down the list of chores you want your kid to do in their room and post it on their door or in another very visible place. That way, wherever they go into their room or leave it, they can see the checklist and be reminded of what they are supposed to be doing.
You have to be careful with the checklist, though. If you make it too extensive or add in chores that your kid has trouble doing, then they may not respond well to it. You can end up frustrating your child, and that’s not what you want. Instead, keep it simple at first and give your child only chores you know they can do and that they are familiar with. Then move on from there and add things to the checklist as your child grows and gets better at their chores.
We suggest adding stars or some other form of incentive to the checklist. Once your child racks up enough stars or points or whatever you put on the checklist, then they can get a special reward. This gives them some kind of indication of how they are doing and what they are looking for.
If your kid does not feel like they are doing a good job or does not know what they are doing, they are unlikely to continue cleaning their room or doing that particular chore. You need to talk with them about work they did inadequately or discuss their feelings with them if they seem depressed or upset because of cleaning.
Thomas from home cleaning by Diamond says Communicating in the early stages of room cleaning efforts will make a big difference and keep your kid from spinning their wheels at a low skill level and a low-level of responsibility. Make sure you give your child the tools they need to clean well and to get the job done effectively. You may not find out what they are missing or what they need until you talk with them about their cleaning efforts.
The first few times you have them clean their room, look over it to make sure they did a good job and give them some pointers about how they can do better, if they didn’t do a very good job. Be careful about being too critical about their work when they are first starting, because you can hinder their ability to feel confident in what they do and keep them from feeling motivated to clean next time. Praise even little things they get right to help keep them on the right path. Make sure to use natural cleaning methods.
Make It Fun
Kids don’t have to feel like they are doing a bunch of hard work overtime they clean their room. You can turn on music for them, make a game out of it or give a prize to whichever kid gets their room done the fastest or neatest. You may not be able to get them cleaning with a lot of energy every time, but you can make it fun from time to time to liven things up and make the work go faster for them. This is especially important when they are given very long or unpleasant jobs, as they are going to need some extra motivation to get those done.
Ways to Get Your Kids to Clean Their Rooms
Now that you know our top tips, you should be able to get your kids to help out and not have to do all the cleaning yourself. Your kids can clean their room or themselves once they are just a few years old. You may have to help out younger ones a bit, but you should teach them to clean on their own and do things without your help as soon as possible.