Keeping a child’s bedroom clean can seem impossible. How many times do you ask your child to clean their room before they actually get it done? Or before you give up and do it yourself? Your child isn’t necessarily ignoring you or trying to push your buttons. In reality, there could be a whole list of underlying causes for your child’s messy bedroom and why your child doesn’t keep their room clean. When you address those root causes, you can help your child stay clean and organized. All it takes is a little patience. Here are some of the most likely reasons why your child doesn’t keep their room clean.
They Haven’t Been Taught Yet
Here’s something that most people don’t realize about keeping a child’s room clean: cleaning is a skill. Adults often forget that kids need to be taught this skill. Instead, most parents just tell their young children to clean their rooms. Then, they walk away and expect their children to know exactly what to do. Cleaning seems like it should be obvious but remember that you’re an adult with years of cleaning skills under your belt. To your child, this could be brand new. Instead of asking your child to clean alone, why not stick around and help the first few times? After that, try staying in the room and providing guidance while your child cleans. Soon, your child will be able to do the cleaning tasks solo.
Have you ever had a big, overwhelming task to do? Remember how you felt when you weren’t even sure which step to take first? Your child may feel the same way about cleaning their room. Sometimes, a child will avoid cleaning because they see the big mess and completely freeze. Therefore, they have no idea where to start. If your child is a preschooler, they don’t know how to divide tasks into smaller pieces yet. You can help with that.
One way to make cleaning less overwhelming is to create a chart with pictures that represent each task. Your chart may have a picture for “putting the toys away” and another for “putting the books back on the shelf.” Your child can refer to each item on the chart and do each task one by one. If you laminate your chart, your child can cross each item off with a dry erase marker.
For a simpler option, just ask your child to pick a color. Let’s say that your child says “blue.”
“Okay,” you’ll respond. “Put all of the blue things away, and when you’re done, we’ll pick your next color.” Continue like this until your child has cleaned the entire bedroom. When you break it down like this, keeping your child’s bedroom clean becomes much simpler.
They Haven’t Developed the Habit Yet
When you want to keep your child’s bedroom clean, you’ll need consistency. Give your child the chance to repeat their cleaning actions, and soon enough, they’ll get the hang of it. Don’t wait until the room is a complete mess before you ask your child to clean it. Instead, make cleaning a regular part of your routine. Have your child clean their room at the same time every day. For example, you could ask your child to put away their toys right after they put on their pajamas every night.
Want More Help?
Want to reinforce your child’s life skills and help them develop good habits? Legacy Academy can help with that. At Legacy Academy in Sugarloaf, our curriculum helps kids build their skills and their confidence in a fun and nurturing environment. Ready to learn more? Contact us today.