Tips for Spring Cleaning With Kids

By Kaitlin Hurtado on May 1, 2022

Nothing welcomes a new season like a successful session of spring cleaning. Some look forward to the annual practice as it gets them in a fresh mindset, while others dread the extra work of cleaning every nook and cranny of their living space. When you also factor in your kids and their often messy, cluttered spaces, spring cleaning can be quite the chore. However, by enlisting the help of the kids of the household, you can turn the annual cleaning into a family event where everyone can take part in the activity together.

Not only are you sharing the workload when enlisting the help of kids, but you are teaching them some essential life skills. Effective time management and organization are just two of many skills cleaning can teach kids.

Not sure how to get the kids involved (and excited) about spring cleaning this year? Keep reading for tips on how to navigate spring cleaning with your kids.

Photos: Pexels

Choose age-appropriate tasks 

Before you even begin spring cleaning with kids, it’s important to think about what cleaning tasks are manageable and appropriate for their age. You wouldn’t want a younger child to be handling deep cleaning with harsher cleaning supplies, but they can certainly help with putting away toys and other items where they need to go.

Verywell Family stresses the importance of choosing age-appropriate tasks for kids. If you are giving tasks to children that are too strenuous or difficult for their current capabilities, they can easily get upset, frustrated, and give up on cleaning altogether.

While younger kids may not be able to handle heavy-lifting or cleaning, they can handle tasks revolving around organization. This can be sorting laundry by color, putting away toys in their designated bins, collecting dirty sheets/blankets, and so on.

Your young ones may not be the most effective cleaners, but they will most likely love the extra time spent by your side as you complete your spring cleaning. If you do not feel comfortable with leaving them to their own tasks, have them on standby and be your “assistant” as needed. If you need another rag or something from another room, send them off to fetch what is needed.

Elementary school children can do more challenging tasks, such as wiping down surfaces and dusting around your home. They also can assist with stripping and making their bed, something they can carry on into their daily life as they make their bed every morning.

Older kids may not be as excited to join you in spring cleaning but can help out with the most challenging of tasks you can delegate to kids. Kids can use the opportunity to declutter their personal spaces, like their closet and bedroom.

You may want to drive all the decisions when it comes to what you want to declutter, involve the kids, especially if you are decluttering their belongings. While you may have to guide them to compromise in some situations, you can help them decide on what to trash or donate, what to keep, and what to put in storage.

Make it fun 

Nothing’s worse than cleaning in silence, especially for kids who can get bored easily. Blast some loud, upbeat music around the house. Opt for music your kids love and can dance and sing along to as they complete their cleaning tasks. Designate an hourly DJ that can choose the songs for a set amount of time.

Opt for rewards

Nothing will incentivize kids to clean more than offering a reward for doing them. There are many ways you can pair rewards with spring cleaning, but here are a couple of ideas to get started:

- A bingo chore chart. Depending on how many cleaning tasks you can delegate to the kids, you can create something similar to a bingo card. For every task a kid completes, the box gets checked off or covered with a sticker. Once they complete a row or the entire card, they earn the reward of your choice.

- A raffle ticket/coupon system. Another way to incentivize chores is by giving kids tickets/coupons for every chore they complete. You can give each chore a certain number of tickets and give different rewards at different values. A smaller task like dusting window blinds may earn them one ticket, but longer tasks like mopping the floors can earn them several tickets. They can redeem a smaller number of tickets for a sweet treat of their choice, or a larger amount of tickets for a new toy.

Tailor your reward selection to your kids’ interests – if you choose rewards they have no interest in, they won’t be motivated to earn them.

Spring cleaning can be made easier (and much more fun) when you enlist the help of kids. With these tips, you can make spring cleaning more efficient and teach the kids some new lessons about staying clean and organized.

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