Not only is housework with kids not fun, it’s near impossible. You take 2 steps forward, and 10 steps back. You catch up on the dozen loads of laundry, only to find another basketful waiting for you. Cleaning with kids is a never ending run on the hamster wheel of housework.
It doesn’t help that I’m one of the rare people who actually enjoys cleaning. It’s therapeutic for me. But doing it with kids is not. To save my sanity, I’ve come up with some ways to make doing housework with kids fun.
Cleaning with Kids
Tip #1: Laundry Sorting Game
I dump all of the clean laundry in the middle of the living room. I then set up a basket for each member of the family. We play a game of separating the clothes into the correct baskets. We might not accomplish folding anything (that usually has to wait until they’re sleeping), but at least we can put the clean clothes in the correct rooms to be folded and put away later.
Tip #2: The 20 Minute Rule
I swear by the 20 minute rule. By following this rule, I don’t work on one task for longer than 20 minutes at a time. I set a timer on my phone and when it goes off we all know to move onto the next task. We break up the 20 minute sessions by rooms and laundry. i.e: 20 minutes cleaning the kitchen, 20 minutes of laundry, 20 minutes cleaning the dining room, etc. It helps push us to clean as much as we can in each room. Jackson loves when the alarm goes off!
Tip #3: Kid-Friendly Products
I armor Jackson and Audrey with baby wipes and microfiber cloths to help me clean. They’re safe and effective. For children eager to spray dangerous chemicals, a simple spray bottle filled with water will do. It’s fun for kids to help as much as possible. (Discover more of my favorite cleaning products here.)
Tip #4: Dance Party
Even the most mundane tasks are fun when you add some music. In my opinion, you should never clean without a dance party. It just wouldn’t be right. We blast the Disney channel on Pandora and clean away.
Tip #5: Rewards
When all else fails, I’m not against a little bribery. To encourage the kids to help me clean, I reward them with a piece of candy after we complete each room.