Getting kids to clean up?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-05-2011
Getting kids to clean up?
4
Tue, 12-04-2012 - 10:53pm

I'm a SAHM of 2 boys, 3 & 5 and I can't stand picking up after them ALL the time. I know it's kind of my job but it;s always a struggle to get them to pick anything up. I have and I know it's horrilbe and I should have never fell into the trap but I end up doing it just so I don't have to mess with the fight to get them to do it. Any suggestions on how to get them to clean up? In an ideal world I would like them to pick up a toy after playing with it and then pulling out another, however, in the real world I'm just not sure that is what would or could ever happen with out me sitting there with them while they play to make sure they pick up right after they are done.

Anyone have any suggestions?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-07-2000
Wed, 12-05-2012 - 10:23am
Have you tried chore boards? Just a simple task list (brush your teeth, clothes in hamper, pick up toys and books) works for my kids. They like being able to earn a sticker for each task they complete. Or you could do the pebble jar idea, which is similar. You get a couple of jars and some of those jewel stones from the craft store. Draw a line on the jar where you want the jar to be filled in order for them to get a reward, and have their goal be to fill the jar with enough pebbles for some fun thing (movie at the theater, ice cream with mom, etc.). For each chore they do, they get a pebble. To add to the idea, you could also take away a pebble for not doing a chore. You could also pick up the toys at the end of the day and put them in a toy time-out box. If they don't put them away and force YOU to put them away, then they don't get to play with them until they start putting their other things away.
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-05-2011
Wed, 12-05-2012 - 12:43pm
Thanks! I love the pebble idea. I do have a chore chart with magnets and the reward was a sticker on the chart and when chart was filled they would get to pick from the prize box. I think they are over the sticker thing though. lol I will try the jar thing though. I think they will respond to that well. I found this great thing on Pinterest, "clutter jail" I did that for awhile. It was much like your "toy time out" concept. I might have to go back to that. We just moved into a new house so I have been a bit slow on getting things back to normal. Thanks again!
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-20-2010
Sat, 12-29-2012 - 12:13am
You get a couple of jars and some of those jewel stones from the craft store. Draw a line on the jar where you want the jar to be filled in order for them to get a reward, and have their goal be to fill the jar with enough pebbles for some fun thing (movie at the theater, ice cream with mom, etc.).
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-04-2011
Fri, 01-04-2013 - 10:14pm

The sticker charts and pebble jars are good ideas.  One other thing is to make sure there's a predictable time for clean up -- our boys know that they're expected to clean up before bed.  It doesn't make them any happier to do it, but they can't argue that they'll do it another time, because before bed is clean up time, period.  It's tough getting my two-year-old to clean up, but usually threatening to take away his vitamin works.  :)