Ways to incorporate kids with cleaning - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 02-22-2005, 02:35 PM - Thread Starter
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I thought it would be fun to share stories how we incorporate our kids into our cleaning routines.

I'll start:
I keep my laundry basket in the kitchen, just outside my door to the garage (where the machines are), I sort it on the kitchen floor, then move the pile I want to wash first at the gate by the garage door, my 1 y.o. ds then helps mommy by putting the clothes over the gate, as I sign "more" to him, and he puts more over the gate, and he watches me put them in the machine. He seems to feel a sense of acomplishment, and is happy and claps.

Anyone else?
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#2 of 6 Old 02-25-2005, 06:24 PM
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well, my 6 and 3 yo boys run any time you say the word clean or sleep, so I take advantage of their competitve nature. They love being timed. So, I give them a task (go put the book on the book shelf) and time them while they do it. They don't compete with each other, there is just something about me counting that gets their little tushies in gear. So, while I am wiping the table down or sorting laundry, they can pick up all the odds and ends that are litered all over the living room/dining room floor. Works wonders and its lots of fun!
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#3 of 6 Old 02-25-2005, 08:08 PM
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Well, my older kids are now at an age that they moan and groan anytime you ask them to help out. :LOL When they were littler, though...WATER BOTTLE! Give them any squirt bottle and they were happy...give them a rag and they'd dust, give them a mop and they'd squirt the floor and "mop". Fun for them, and they'd get things done too.

My older DS asked for a dustbuster one Christmas. Hey, $20 for a dustbuster or $20 for some "toy of the moment" that wouldn't last? Heck ya, he got the dustbuster!
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#4 of 6 Old 02-27-2005, 04:48 PM
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My little one "helps" put the wet clothes into the dryer and the dry clothes into the laundry basket when he feels like it. He also puts his dishes in the sink and his toys away after playing with them, usually with some help from a big person.

The older ones have their chores- specifically, they put away their own laundry. I won't wash their clothes unless I have some empty laundry baskets to carry it upstairs in and a clear path to the hamper (alternatively, they can bring a basket of laundry to be washed out of their room for me.) If they neglect to put their clothes away in a timely fashion- the consequences are that they have trouble finding their clothes and/or the clothes get wrinkled.

Ruth, single mommy to 3 quasi-adults
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#5 of 6 Old 02-28-2005, 07:04 PM
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My 2 yr old loves to put clothes into the dryer for me, and will bring clothes into the laundry room by the armful. He loves sweeping and mopping so he gets to use the small versions of mama's brooms and mops... he likes to help, no matter what we are doing. He even puts his hand right on mine to "help" me.

My 13 year old has just learned to put the dishes in the dishwasher, he is good at unloading but hated it so he and dh traded chores. I also taught him how to operate the washer and dryer at about age 9 so he can wash his own things. I rarely wash his clothes anymore (however, either does he, LOL). He also participates whenever we do decluttering as a team.
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#6 of 6 Old 02-28-2005, 08:31 PM
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Spray 'em with Pledge and have 'em crawl under the dresser.

Talia *loves* to help me vacuum, but she can't control the long hose on our canister vac. Ergo, I've been coveting one of those kid-sized working vacuums. She also loves to help me hang laundry on the lower rungs of our drying racks. She helps a lot in the kitchen - cutting veggies with a butterknife, stirring pots on the stove, pushing the button for the handichopper and spice grinder, holding the mixer (before I got my KitchenAid, she loved the handmixer.) Sometimes she'll take it upon herself to rewash the dishes drying in the dish drainer She's actually been great about helping me pick up toys. She's great about carrying things for me, and putting dishes in the sink (I have to be really careful not to leave anything breakable in the sink, because she can't reach to place things in gently...)
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