Get your kids cleaning
with a house cleaning checklist of their own...
Is it even possible to get kids cleaning? All I know is that I am tired of cleaning the entire house by myself--how about you? If you divided the number of house per week I spend cleaning by the number of people in my house, just think of how much extra time you'd have!
You don't have to be Martha Stewart to want a clean house. And if you have all the time in the world, maybe you could keep up with the barrage of clutter that invades and multiplies with kids, but probably not even then.
If you're just getting started, we've complied a list of
8 must-do's for teaching kids to clean
. Which is a great place to start. Getting the family's support is critical, so also consider holding a
to explain some of your ideas.
Enlisting the troops is essential. But you already know that you want to get your kids cleaning—that's why you're here. You know that involving kids in chores not only saves time (eventually) but they learn skills that are essential in their adult lives. But let's be honest—the main reason is because YOU need HELP!
Here's how we started our routine.
provide the structure, and to get kids cleaning, you need an actual house cleaning checklist to give clear expectations step-by-step.
Kids need to know what age appropriate expectations are and understand what a clean house looks like. Do they know and understand the difference between “
” and “clean?”
In order to get kids cleaning, they need to know the answer. If you're already convinced, you can go ahead and get started creating a
house cleaning checklist
for any room in the house.
I like to use one when my kids are first learning how to clean a certain room because it provides a clear set of instructions and criteria involved in completing a certain job to your satisfaction. Here are the benefits:
First, it removes you from being a part of the situation, because the list (even though you wrote it) is on a piece of paper and your kids won't argue with it.
Second, the expectations are clear and orderly. Most kids want to succeed and do a good job for the household, but they just need to be told what to do. How many of us were actually taught how to clean something? Kids don't intuitively know what tool or product to use, or how to scrub something, and that is if (and that's a big IF) they even see the dirt in the first place. I have considered making a chore chart for my darling husband!
Start with taking a photo of every room when it is clean. (If your house is like mine, all photos might not be taken on the same day). Then, think of your reader and their age, and your expectations.
Write down every task you want them to accomplish in a certain room. Use their age as a guide for how many items to include on their cleaning checklists.
For example, with a 3-5 year old, you only want a few things. Remember that the big picture goal is their buy-in to contributing to the household.
Okay, let's see an example.
Here is a checklist for cleaning the bathroom
It's long, but that's because I really wanted to clarify my expectations for the child doing this job, who in this case was 8 years old. Of course we did this work together the first several times. You would want to
modify your expectations
if a younger child is doing this job, or if he or she is doing it for the first time. Also please consider teaching your kids to clean with
green cleaning products
Is the bathroom really cleaner if they do it than if you do? Of course not. And this is where most families fail at this!
The temptation is huge to give in and say “oh, forget it! I could do this SO much quicker and better than my kid!”
And you'd be right.
Remember that you are making an investment in the future, and I am here to tell you that the return is huge. Not only will you reap the rewards of having a team of workers, but you are giving them life skills. Get your kids cleaning using a house cleaning checklist--the tool that can help you accomplish all of these things, so what are you waiting for?
Go to Chore Charts from Kids Cleaning