I have a friend who tells me she never leaned how to clean. The reason is that when she was in school her mom would clean the house, including her bedroom. Never having to clean her own bedroom as a child meant that my friend didnít learn the skills needed to keep her own house as an adult.
It is our responsibility to teach our children to keep their own rooms clean, and the way we do that is to clean with the child in the room, not when they are absent.
Even as a preschooler, we can engage them in the cleaning process. It may be quicker to clean with the child out of the room, but each time you do it with your child in the room, they are gradually learning to do it on their own.
Your child knows his toys better than you do. He will tell you what he likes and those he doesnít play with any more. Equally, he will know what clothes fit and what he has grown out of. So involve him in the decision as to what to keep and what to donate. Also, give your child power over where things go in his room. If he wants to move his bed, let him. If he moves it to a silly place, he will soon find out. Children donít have much control over their lives, so let them have control over what is in their bedroom and where everything will be.
Teach your children what is trash and must be thrown out, which possessions they have but donít want that can be given to others and to remove things from their bedroom that donít belong there. (Otherwise known as the three piles of give away, throw away and put away). Encourage them to say they need more storage, or shelves or to solve the problem of where to put their possessions.
It is possible to keep a room clean by working in there for 15 minutes a day, every day. So, help your child get into a routine of 15 minutes a day cleaning his room. That way there shouldnít be the need to deep clean for multiple days once a year.
I will frequently say to my children, ďGo and get me 3 items of clothing that donít fit you any more, and 3 toys you donít want.Ē The rule is that the toys have to be their own, and not belong to a sibling. With 4 children, I can get rid of 24 things from my house very fast just by asking the children for 6 items each. Doing this regularly cuts down on unwanted things in the house.
The key to reducing the things in your house is to get rid of little and often, and the same goes for your childrenís bedrooms. Doing a small task daily is a great way to keep your house peaceful with less clutter.
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