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8 Rules That Will Help Teach Your Kid To Clean Up After Themselves

There’s a perfectly reasonable explanation for why kids don’t clean up after themselves: They see no point. It takes years to step on enough Legos to develop an appreciation for a clean house. In the meantime, you need to rethink whatever ideas are popping in your head when you get angry about the chaos they inevitably leave behind. First, make a new rule that no toy can be brought out if old toys haven’t been put away. Second, when your kid expresses frustration or anxiety about having to clean up after themselves, be empathetic rather than draconian (after all, you’re not that far out from when you hating cleaning up, too — also known as college). With these – and the other 6 – rules, be sure to communicate them clearly as the start of a new policy so everyone’s on the same page. Also, don’t be a total jerk about it; play music to make cleaning less boring for them, create a contest out of who can pick the most up fastest.