Getting Your Kids To Clean Their Rooms
What starts as a gentle reminder to your kids to clean their room often ends in yelling demands and threatening consequences. There goes what should have been a nice calm day over what should have been an easy thing to accomplish.
Teaching kids how to clean their room early is a very good idea, but it's never too late. Like most things in parenting, you want to set a good example. You can't really expect them to care about their own room if the rest of the house is in shambles and you grumble every time you do clean.
You peek in to see how things are going after telling them to clean and they're sitting amongst the filth playing a video game. What the heck? Before you get upset and start screaming, think of this... your idea of a clean room and your kid's idea of a clean room are probably completely different.
It's time to make a chore chart.
Decide the amount of cleanliness you can live with.
List age appropriate chores, use pictures for younger kids.
Start with the basics.
- Make bed
- Put laundry in hamper
- Hang and put away clothes
- Toys in proper place
- Vacuum or sweep floors
Kids also need to be shown how to do chores. You can start by doing them together which will let them know what is expected. It can also be a good time to connect through conversation and you may learn your teens favorite band while listening to music.
There does come a time when teens have a greater need for privacy and control. Their room becomes their sanctuary. Most kids go through a messy phase so this may be the time to let them be and keep the door closed. Let them know that they still need to maintain standards for health and safety. No garbage, dirty dishes, broken glass, or blocked doorways. You are however well within your rights to invade the sanctuary if you suspect any dangerous or illegal activity.
Sometimes it becomes necessary to enforce consequences like no friends over, no video games, or wearing a dirty shirt until their room is clean; but hopefully your kids will learn that a clean environment is healthy and easier to maintain.