House cleaning goes faster and a lot funnier with the entire family helping one another. So last Sunday, with the weather so uncooperative, the head of the household instructed his kids to help the mother with the cleaning. And he led by example.
A few house cleaning tips to get everyone involved in the task safely, efficiently and again, fun:
SHOW THEM HOW.
As we demand to know what is expected of us in a workplace, same is true with our children. If we want our children to make his bed, for instance, then we need to teach them step-by-step. Cleaning the bed may be alien to the kids. And as parents, we should not blame our children for not listening or following our orders. Had it occurred to you that maybe, the child does not know how to clean? Apparently, no one had ever taught him how to clean his room thus he doesn’t know where to begin.
Now that my boys are ten and eight years old, I told them to clean the bathroom every after bath. I showed to them how I scrub the tiles and sink and how to sweep the floor. I did not make use of any cleaning material other than scrub and water. I later explained to them that as I clean the bathroom, I use toilet cleaner and scrub. But for them, they only need to scrub the tiles so the floor and tiles would not be too slippery. After that, much to my delight,the boys indeed “splash water and scrub the tiles” after using the bathroom.
So parents need to realize that children have to be taught how to clean because they aren’t born knowing how to do it.
GIVE SPECIFIC INSTRUCTION.
The kids would easily relay to the task if they know what to do. So give them specific instruction. To keep from overwhelming little kiddos, we parents can give out one or two directions at a time. We should let the child finish the first task before asking him to do another. Example would be, “Bunso, use the brush to scrub the dirt off the block. Good! You may then put the soapy block on the bin.”
ASSIGN OR GIVE POST.
Sometimes, telling them to “scrub the floor” sounds too harsh. We may have a lot more luck and be obeyed by naming the task cute words like “you will be THE MR.SCRUBBER for the week.” Husband asked our firstborn to scrub the floor last Sunday. The task sounded too tedious. Instead, we may soften it by coining fun post names. The kids would then feel somehow elated being assigned a different post other than being a student at school or being the firstborn. It will all the more thrill them if we give responsibilities or key result areas (KRAs) for that specific post alone. For instance, the SCRUBBER’s area is the floor. His main job description is to make the floor sparkling clean.
TEACH BY EXAMPLES.
We cannot teach cleanliness to toddlers if they see for themselves that we do not clean as well. Also, we need to remember that children mimic us — their parents. If our things are disorganized and messy, we cannot expect them to keep the house or their own stuff in order. We will only confuse them if we insist that they make their room in order if they see that our bed is messy. We should teach by example.
We need to remember that they are children and they may not get the task done on the first try. Allow them to perfect a chore, before assigning a new one. We need to monitor them but allow them to complete the task by themselves. After each meal, it is second son’s duty to clean the dining table. His first few tries were unsuccessful leaving me to repeat them. But after some time, he was able to perfect the task.
REWARD THEM AFTERWARDS.
We parents should likewise use encouraging words to make the task light for our little kids. A simple pat on the back or “good” , “very good” would do. It won’t hurt as well if we cook something to relax them after a tiring task. my treat to the boys –
Sharing household duties is fun. And it would be a lot more fun if we involve everyone even our six-year-old kid. Exempting one of our children might cause jealousy or bitterness. There are always tasks suitable for their age.
Cleaning as well does not spell ALL SERIOUSNESS. Especially with kids helping us, we need to be a little creative, light, and gentle.
And lastly, it is so easy to let the kids be involved in any household task if we as parents are cooperative as well. We teach them, PATIENTLY. We train them LOVINGLY. and we LEAD BY EXAMPLE.
* I am decluttering my blog and getting rid of unnecessary and unrelated posts. I chance upon this and this brings back memories. We do not have much before. We only have a few appliances and our dining table has just enough food for the day. But how patient I was back then. And how giddy the boys were. Perhaps because I was more loving before. This post reminds me to be PATIENT and LOVING. Thank you, Lord, for letting me read this again and be reminded.