Isn’t cleaning up the best? 😉
I often end up cleaning up (after at least a few days to a week of the mess sitting there, LOL) after my kids because, let’s face it, it’s faster and more efficient. I am getting better at having them clean up as they go, but in the name of creative play I let things get pretty messy.
I can ignore it for a little while, but then my house starts to look like a heaping mountain of chaos or a three-ring-circus and then I start to feel overwhelmed. I have gotten much better at looking at it and telling myself, “Let it Go” and even made a parody video to help myself and parents like me laugh at the madness.
Here are a few (goofy) ways that we attempt to make cleaning fun in our house, there are pros and cons to each, but most of them get the job done:
Have a family clean up dance party!
Not only is dancing fun and a good workout, it is also a way to raise the vibration in the house. Let’s say you’ve had a super long day at home or at work and you look around at the mess at the end of the day and want to scream! Instead of screaming, put on some fun dance music and bust a move while you all clean up together! It sounds silly, but it is super fun!
Pros: Fun, good exercise!
Cons: Sometimes we are having so much fun, we forget that we were cleaning up, Lol!
Have a catchall room!
Ok, this one is more for the people who can stand for one room to get crazy! If you keep all of your rooms neat, more power to you (and can you come over and help me?)! 😉 There are times that I like to organize and put everything in its place, but then there are times I just want to get the crap off the floor pronto, so I don’t keep stepping on razor sharp toys that are in the middle of the floor. On these occasions I designate an area for all of the clutter to go so I can delve into it another time. I can often be seen throwing random toys into the playroom to get them out of the kitchen.
Pros: Easy as one-two-throw (I mean three, haha)!
Cons: You have to clean up an even crazier mess later!
Whistle/sing While You Work:
What a better way to make cleaning up fun, especially for little ones then to sing while you clean! I personally like to sing while I do pretty much every task, because it makes anything more fun! Sing the traditional “Cleanup Song,” the Dora cleanup song, or make up your own with your kids.
Cons: If you hate singing, this one’s not for you.
Make it a Game
This is a great one for kids who work well (or even better) under pressure, like my older daughter. Set your microwave timer and give them a time to get a certain amount picked up in. No timer, no problem-tell a little white lie and say that they can break the Guinness Book of World Records for how many toys picked up if they get enough off the floor. See who can gather the most the fastest. Have them count out loud or have someone keep score.
Pros: Fun activity that the family can do together!
Cons: If your child is more sensitive and likes to take their time, this might feel like too much pressure.
Use a Bin System
Whether its toy bins, the trash can, the recycle can, etc. Give your child a place to put things and help them learn to organize by having them sort items. We have a three bins on my daughter’s desk: one for recycle, one for trash and one for gifts/donations. This helps her to learn to categorize items and encourages her to recycle and give to others. She loves this system (although does require many reminders to use it). We also love 3 Sprouts Toy Bins they are awesome!
Pros: Teaches organization and the joy of giving.
Cons: Depending on their personality, it might take a lot of reminders to help your child stick with the system (like my daughter).
What tips do you have for getting your kids to clean up at home? We’d love to hear them in the comments below!
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