We are going to show you how to encourage kids to tidy their room. It’s no secret that children can be extremely messy. Carelessly leaving bits of unfinished food under the table after a meal and simply leaving toys laying around wherever they feel like it. It’s difficult to comprehend that this behaviour is normal for them, but it is a part of their development.
As a parent, when you go to their room and see the state that it has been left in, and it is appalling. It makes you wonder things like ‘Why are they so messy? Why do they never put things away after themselves, or perhaps why has my child decided to take the mattress of their bed and now they are casually pretending it is a trampoline. Well, these things are generally what children are like, their creative imaginations run wild and they don’t see the mess the way adults do.
They see it as a load of fun, adventure even. You must ask yourself though, how do you expect them to keep their room tidy and clean if they have not yet been taught how too? They may know that clothes belong in their wardrobe or the chest of drawers. Perhaps that toys belong in the toy box, but without physically saying ‘come on let’s tidy your room’. Showing them that toys go here after you are finished playing. Dirty clothes go here, and clean clothes go in your drawers, they simply are not to know.
How can I encourage my child to keep their room clean?
Tidy up the room with them, it doesn’t have to be a horrible experience, it can be a learning curve for parent and child. Make it a routine, simply showing them once won’t be enough to create the tidiest child. Be consistent and clean with them each day, eventually, they will want a tidy room, that looks much better right?
Create rules. As parents, we all want to be our children’s best friends but we simply cannot be their friends all the time. Sometimes we have to be parents, and parents lay down the ground rules. These rules can be simple like no food upstairs, or, you need to eat at the table. Don’t just lay down the rules, explain why. The more they know the logic of your reasoning the more likely they are to understand, listen and respect you.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that your child’s room may be messy because they have too many toys. I hear the expression all of the time that children cannot have too many toys, and this is simply not a true statement.
How getting rid of things can be beneficial?
Over the years that my children have grown up, there have been toys that they do not even play with anymore. If they are not being played with ever then what is the point in keeping them? It just makes the room look untidy. Especially if you are limited on space which let’s face it most of us are.
Having a good clear out can be extremely beneficial. You can donate toys that your child has grown out of, giving them a new lease of life. You can make their room tidier overall and if it is tidier it can reduce your little one’s stress or bad behaviour.
Another way you can encourage your child to tidy their room would be to give them a reward or stars for their charts after doing so. Most rewards nowadays are typically unhealthy food-related and I urge you to not use that as a reward. This is because later on when your child becomes an adult. When they are feeling emotional they will try to improve their mood using food as a reward. This will not help them feel happier long term, it will likely result in obesity and poor mental health.
What I recommend instead is to do something nice together as a family. This could be a new experience, going to a museum, swimming, mini-golf, to the park, soft play, or somewhere your child likes to go. The better the reward, the more likely that your child will want to keep their room clean.
Should kids have chores?
This is a topic that is often debated amongst parents. Some people believe that kids should be kids. Playing, having fun and that the parents should take care of the mess. Whilst others think that completing chores teaches them responsibility, can help encourage children to tidy their own room, it is good practice and helps them develop an appreciation for the parent. This is absolutely correct in most cases.
Should kids be paid for doing chores?
The answer is, It depends. If your child is tidying their own room and their own mess. They should definitely not be paid for completing those types of chores. If however the chores involve tidying up after everyone, this could be something that they could be paid for. Although some people would argue that tidying up is a team effort and that we all need to do our bit to help out.
After all mummy and daddy are not being paid for all of the cleaning they do. On the other hand, giving them an incentive could for one make your life a lot easier reducing the workload. Secondly, it could teach them life skills. Only you know what is right for your family.