Make a Room Cleaning Kit

If we can find ways to make cleaning rooms more fun, we will likely get better results. Since most children would rather play (and make a mess) instead of cleaning up a mess, parents have to get creative.

You and your child can put together a room cleaning kit that will make the chore a little more fun and a lot less stressful. Start by picking up a plastic caddy with a handle, the type that is generally used for cleaning supplies or tools. As you and your child decorate the caddy with stickers or paints (or anything you like), explain what it will be used for.

Once the caddy is all decked out, begin filling it with items that are necessary for cleaning the bedroom. A bag to throw away trash (use paper bags rather than plastic for smaller children), paper towels, a specially treated dusting cloth or dusting wipes for bigger kids, a special CD to listen to while cleaning (something fun and upbeat) and anything else your child can use while tidying up his or her room.

Also, make a checklist to include. Give a detailed list of what needs to be done, such as putting away toys, putting dirty clothes in the hamper, making the bed, and other tasks. Give your child stick-on stars or other stickers to mark off each item as it is completed.

You can also make a room cleaning chart, similar to the chore board in one of my previous articles, instead of putting together a kit. You can list the tasks that need to be completed or you can designate each one with a picture. Let your child mark things off as they are finished or put a sticker next to the item.

Another way to get things done is to make cleaning into a contest. Set a timer, clean your room at the same time your child cleans his or hers, and make a race out of it. If you both finish before the timer rings, a treat or a fun activity is in order.

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