Monday, December 7, 2015

Parent Tips: Daily clean-up routines

In previous blogs, we discussed organizing things and having a set time daily for tidying-up. Consider participating in this routine, alternating your time with different kids and various tasks. The goal is threefold. First, help your kids get involved in maintaining their stuff. Secondly,  getting them to tidy up things daily (putting everything in its place). And third, choosing what needs to be prepared ahead of time; for example, what clothes need to be ironed for tomorrow?

This approach gives you a chance to model and demonstrate for the family the importance of household teamwork and helping each other out. All adults have to participate. All children have to participate. You may find that the younger kids jump in and imitate older siblings and parents. If feasible, the youngest can help the oldest with simple tasks.!/Parent%E2%80%99s-Companion-Guide-to-the-Make-the-Most-of-Yourself-series/p/51455944/category=0

As a parent, try to maintain a positive attitude (to the extent possible) as you walk through your children's rooms. Show them how to work fast and efficiently. It is not hard to arrange things if done on a daily basis. An example would be to carry a plastic bag with you to serve as a portable trash can. Another tactic would be placing hanging clothes in the closet by usage, color schemes, or other commonsense positions. Offer to help with some items; for example: “Would you like me to iron this for you?” You are providing examples of teamwork when you do this.  

When feasible, make sure that you use common tasks to teach your children how to do things. Washing the clothes is a good example. If your child has the maturity to do this, make it part of his or her routine. Even guys don't usually mess up washing their t-shirts, underwear, and socks. The same process applies to kitchen work, including cooking and cleaning.

There are no gender biases allowed. You participate in the meals and sharing the bounty; you also participate in the preparation and cleanup. I'm not recommending my grandfather's strict version of this theme: "You don't work, you don't eat. " But in past generations, work was a needed family mission, and gathering the eggs and crops was a necessity. We seem to be far removed from this reality. 

As with previously suggested activities, rewards for participation and consequences for the lack of cooperation are helpful. 

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