Why and how to get your little one(s) involved in Spring Cleaning
When we look outside, we can already feel spring’s just around the corner. If you’re thinking of starting Spring Cleaning soon as well, you might want to involve your kids in this “tradition” too. Did you know it’s actually good for your little one(s) to let them help you?
For one, it gives them a great sense of accomplishment, collaboration, independence and responsibility. They will learn about cleaning up and organizing – and that is not just something you do just because mom or dad asked you too. It teaches them that it is just part of life. Also, it will develop their fine motor skills and self-confidence. Next to that, you can spend time together and don’t have to tackle organizing your little one(s) clothes, toys, art projects, etcetera, on your own!
Here are 8 steps to getting and keeping your little one(s) involved:
1. Turn up the music
Make it fun and play their favorite playlist so you can sing together while cleaning up.
2. Let them choose a chore
Let your kid(s) choose age-appropriate chores they like would to do. Here are a few examples of chores you can let the little one(s) do:
Keep or donate: toys, books, clothing
This teaches them to let go of the things they don’t want to use or play with anymore and how they could make others (like friends or less fortunate ones) happy.
*If you have a bit more time and would like to make this more fun, you could ask your little one(s) why this item made them happy, what they remember about it and if they are choosing to donate, how they imagine someone else will enjoy this item.
With clothes you could also do a fashion show to see which clothes are too small.
Follow the leader
While you’re mopping the floor, your kid(s) can follow you with a towel where they stand and slide on over the floor, to dry the floor.
Kids would love to use tools as well. A duster looks fun and it’s an easy task for your little one(s) to do.
Let them clean up their desks and sort and gather their pencils and/or markers. Or make them sort their toys in bins. And you could let them sort the books they want to keep by structuring them based on height, color or thickness.
3. Keep every chore under 6 minutes
Make sure you give your little one(s) tasks that can be achieved in 5 minutes and guide them step by step. For a child, 5 minutes feels like eternity.
4. Clean up one space at a time
Start and finish cleaning up one space at a time. This way kids can see the end result.
5. Compliment while cleaning
Pay attention to how they clean-up and give them compliments, so they learn what they are doing well.
6. Be patient
It’s better to let your little one(s) complete the task than to give in and do it yourself. Also, make sure to not re-do the chore, to prevent taking away their sense of accomplishment.
7. Use a checklist
You probably know nothing is more satisfying and motivating than checking off a finished task. This works the same way with children. You can use this free printable chore chart:
8. Treat yourselves
After finishing cleaning, give your kids and yourself a reward for all the hard work. For example, watch a movie together, go get an ice cream or have your kids’ favorite meal for dinner.