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Why Kids Hate to Clean their Rooms and the Secret to Making it Fun

May 18, 2008
For most kids, bedroom cleaning is one of the top dreaded of all household chores. It falls within the ranks of scooping the poop or spending an entire Saturday afternoon cleaning the garage. Many moms get such opposition to this dreaded chore, often they just end up cleaning their children's room themselves. But have you ever stop to wonder why this job is so dreaded by most children?

Bits, Parts and Pieces
A child's bedroom seems to be the gathering place for discarded wrappers, torn paper, broken toy parts and even the occasional rotten banana peel. All these bits, parts and pieces can make a child feel so overwhelmed they often don't even know where to begin! The solution? Give them a system.

The System
In the adult world, we have systems and procedures in place to effectively carry out tasks. Can you imagine beginning a new job with nothing more than "good luck" and a slap on the back? Or how about your local city government all running things as they see fit without following procedures? It would be sheer chaos and not very productive. Yet, that's the kind of environment we set for our children to work in when we likewise, don't give them a system in which to clean. To the adult, it may seem obvious as to what needs to be done to get a room clean, but to a child, it could very well just seem like a whole lot of chaos.

The Bedroom Cleaning Tools
The right tools can help us do our jobs efficiently. The same is true for a child to clean a bedroom. You will need 4 small plastic tubs or laundry baskets and a small garbage can. With a permanent marker, write on each individual plastic tub (or laundry basket) the following words: return, clothes, toys, books. Next, draw a half way mark inside the garbage can.

Toss, Divide and Conquer!

The first step of the system is also the most fun! It is to make a big messy pile in the middle of the room. Using the door as a starting place, have your child work their way around the parameter of the room, tossing everything that is out of place into one big pile in the middle. Don't forget to throw the garbage such as wrappers (provided it's not a rotten sandwich!) into the pile as well.

For this step you will need the marked tubs and garbage can placed near the messy pile. Have your child sort through the pile, tossing the various items into the appropriate tubs or garbage can. For example, schoolbooks, comics or magazines, go into the tub marked "books". The "return" tub should be used for any items that need to be returned to other areas of the house such as dishes or dirty clothes.

After the messy pile is gone, have your child grab a tub and return the contents to their proper palce. If the garbage can is higher than the inside marked line, it will need to be emptied. If the garbage is lower than the line, it can be put back for next time. Last, but not least, the tubs need to be returned to their designated storing place.

Voila! You've just given your child a recipe for success to clean a messy room! Not only do most children consider this way of cleaning fun, but it boosts self confidence and provides skills that can last a lifetime.
About the Author
Jennie von Eggers is author of several popular creative learning products for children including; Zone Cleaning for Kids and Bedroom Cleaning for Kids. To learn more about these and other visual and fun learning tools go to http://www.TriggerMemorysystem.com/CleanNFlip
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