Teaching kids to clean up after themselves

Do you see your child toss toys all over their room, leaving you with a monumental clean-up task every day? Are you concerned that your kids leave their books and games strewn all over the floor, never bothering to put things back in their designated spaces? Don’t worry…that’s natural for young kids who don’t know any better! The staff at daycare in Gaithersburg MD know what you’re going through, and have some advice on how you can teach your child to clean up after themselves.

The Action Plan

Parents, guardians, and homecare-givers, who enroll their kids in child care in Gaithersburg Maryland, will notice some thing that may be absent at home. All it takes is for you to watch how the trained professionals interact with kids, and how the environment is set up, to understand how you too can motivate your kids to clean up after themselves. Here’s a generic action plan to follow:

  • A place for everything: Even though kids pick up stuff strewn around the floor or carpet; doesn’t necessarily mean they’ve tidied up – they could dump everything randomly in a pile. It’s vita, therefore, that everything that kids interact with, toys, books, backpacks, shoes, clothing – has a designated place for it, and that kids know where that place is. This eliminates the guesswork out of the cleanup process
  • Make it easy: Have you noticed how well-organized daycare in Gaithersburg MD is? Everything is labelled and organized to make it easy for children to know where to put back things. For pre-readers, it’s a good idea to use pictures and icons to identify storage places, instead of text-based labels
  • Lay down a routine: Don’t just walk in on kids and “scare” them into cleaning up at the drop of a hat. Kids need time to psyche themselves up to put away toys, books, games and other play and study materials. The best way to get them habitual into doing that is to agree on a routine with them: Toys away an hour before supper time. Power-off, disconnect, and put away that laptop and video gaming equipment half-hour before bed. De-cluttering takes place first Saturday every month
  • Give clear instructions: For kids to act, it’s important you provide them with clear, unambiguous instructions. When providing those instructions, the experienced staff at preschool in Gaithersburg MD will speak softly and slowly to children in their care. They’ll also repeat those directions, and even simulate good clean-up behavior by tidying up a few times, so the children learn what “clean up after yourselves” means
  • Explain the consequences: If you wish kids to understand why cleaning-up after themselves is important, explain what the consequences of not doing so are. Someone might trip on a misplaced toy and hurt themselves. Or, their favorite book might get crushed if it’s left on the couch and someone sat on it.

Team Work Pays

At summer camp in Gaithersburg MD, kids learn the importance of team work in getting things done. You too can leverage those lessons to help your kids clean up after themselves. For example, make tidying the room a joint task among siblings – Billy clears up the toys, while sue makes the beds. And you too can pitch-in, at least initially, to show them you’re on their clean-up crew!

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