The time of year for spring cleaning is at hand. Break out the mops, dustpans, and garbage bags because it is time to clean and de-clutter. I always feel lighter after cleaning out a challenging closet or a kid's room. Probably one of the most challenging rooms to de-clutter are the kids' rooms. My kids find ways to hang onto the craziest things. With three girls in one room and a messy boy in another room, I suspect a lot of garbage bags will be used. This year, I am enlisting the kids to help out. Naturally, it isn't at the top of their list of spring activities. Luckily, this isn't my first rodeo so I have a few tricks up my sleeve.
- Make it Fun. You do remember Mary Poppins, right? She made cleaning look fun and magical. You may not be able to make the room help clean itself but you can add in some fun. Make it a race and see which kid can clean the fastest. Set up laundry baskets and allow the kids to toss clothes in a basket for dirty clothes, clothes to donate, and clothes to sell. You can also set up baskets for sorting. Play some fun music and dance and clean at the same time.
- Make Some Money. Kids love to do jobs if they can earn extra money. Some save up for a new bike while others just want some extra cash for candy money. Either way, earning a monetary reward is a great motivator. Have your kids gather up gently used clothes, books, and toys, to place in a garage sale. Your teen will love the ease of selling DVDs online. Nothing like the option of selling DVDs, CDs, and games online to encourage your teen to clean out his entertainment section.
- Make it a Team Effort. No one wants to clean alone. Set up a system with a list of jobs and assign everyone something to complete. I used to allow my kids to pick three jobs from a list I made of different cleaning chores. Everyone tended to work harder since it was a group effort and they had definate jobs to complete.