Have you ever wondered what you need to do to teach your kids to clean? Perhaps you just want your child to clean his room. Or you want her to pick up her toys. Or maybe you have older kids that need to help more around the house.
Well, you are not alone!
A reader recently wrote to me and said:
“My biggest challenge is not having trained my kids and not having good time management skills. No one picks up after himself, including me most of the time. Nothing gets done on a regular basis, especially dishes and laundry. Then everything else snowballs and our homeschool suffers as well.”
Your kids probably aren’t excited about helping out at home, but you should still delegate tasks to them! There are several research reports I’ve read that indicate the importance of chores.
The author of How to Raise an Adult: Break Free of the Overparenting Trap and Prepare Your Kid for Success (affiliate) says that the best way to raise a responsible adult is to do these two things:
- Make them do chores.
- Teach them to love.
I haven’t read the book, so I’m not necessarily recommending it here. However, as I was reading a promotional article, the 2 step process really caught my attention!
I’ve always known that kids should do chores, but it’s nice to be affirmed. Parents everywhere will be happy to know that kids can – and should – do chores!
But how do you go about teaching kids to do chores?
Well, teaching kids to do chores might seem tricky. But it doesn’t have to be.
Keep in mind that no matter their age, you probably need to teach your children how to complete each chore. Show them how to unload the dishwasher. Show them how to set the table. Show them how to sweep the floor. Then continually reinforce the procedure.
Here what’s working in my household…
How to Teach Kids to Clean
Here are the steps that I like to take when giving kids a new chore:
- Show your child how to complete the task. Be clear about what you expect.
- Let your child do the task while you are there to guide them.
- Ask your child to verbalize how they completed each step of the task.
- Agree upon terms and frequency of the chore.
Once all the steps have been completed and your child is confident in this responsibility, you may still need to remind them from time to time. Just like adults, kids can get sidetracked and sloppy in their work. A kind reminder can go a long way.
Your kids might need a pep talk every once in a while. They need to know chores aren’t a punishment…they are just part of life.
Stay in constant communication with your kids and ask for their input. When someone has buy-in to a new idea, they are more likely to fulfill their responsibility.
Above all, let them see that you have a good attitude about your own responsibilities around the house. Attitudes are contagious!
I’d love to hear from you! What are some tips you have when it comes to teaching kids to clean?