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Rare is the child who wakes up on a Saturday morning excited to help clean a house. If your kids are reluctant to help with housecleaning, try these approaches. Start by giving your kids a day and time to finish chores. For example, you might tell your kids that everyone in the family will help clean the house on Saturday mornings and will finish all cleaning by noon. You could also tell your children that they are not allowed to go outside or play indoor games until they finish their chores. Add in Rewards and Fun Consider giving your kids an allowance if they do their chores. You could also give your children an allowance only if they do their chores well and with a pleasant attitude. Have your children clean two or three rooms at your house or take on all household chores for just one day. This provides a lot of real time contrast. After cleaning two to three or more rooms at your house, taking out the garbage and sweeping the kitchen floor may appear real easy. Turn on music to add energy to the morning. Face it, chores are boring, not only to kids but also to adults. The sound of music playing in the background can add a bit of fun to an otherwise boring task. Call out or verbally recognize your kids’ good housecleaning efforts. Let your children know that you appreciate their pitching in. Tell them how completing their chores helps to keep the entire house sanitary and looking good. Avoid criticizing your children or using chores as a way to punish your kids for poor school performance or other missteps that they may make. Housecleaning Independence Works Give your kids opportunities to determine how they will tackle chores. For example, if your son washes breakfast dishes on Saturday morning, let him decide whether he’s going to wash skillets and pans first or if he’s going to wash bowls and plates first. Leave it to your son to decide how he’s going to stack dishes in the drainer. As tempting as it might be to tell your kids how to complete each step of a chore, doing so can make housecleaning seem like punishment. It also sends the message that you don’t trust your children and that you think your ideas and way of tackling a chore is better. By alternating chores among your kids, you can keep chores from becoming boring. Alternating chores could also help your kids discover certain types of housecleaning projects that they might like better than others. Recruit your kids to help with housecleaning early. It could prevent a bad habit, such as thinking that it’s someone else’s responsibility to clean up their messes, from setting in. Performing chores also teaches your children how to be organized, time management, and how to work well with others. Perhaps most importantly, helping with housecleaning helps your children learn about accountability.



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