Finding ways to make them want to help isn’t as hard as it seems
Any parent knows that getting kids to help with keeping the house clean often feels like an exercise in futility. Getting them to clean up after themselves consistently requires stealth, coercion, and more than a little cunning. Many parents give up, figuring it’s quicker and easier to clean the place up themselves than wage a battle with youngsters who never seem to get the message.
If this sounds familiar, take heart! Savvy parents have discovered ways to get kids involved in decluttering the house — willingly. Here are a few tips from those who have experienced success in this area. Try one or more of them in your household and see what happens. You may end up with a whole team of little helpers for the next decluttering project!
Kansas City Dumpster Rental Plays a Role
Before we get to the decluttering tips, keep in mind that small dumpster rentals — such as those from Small Haul Containers — are a great tool when it’s time to declutter the house. Having a roll-off dumpster rental parked in the driveway ensures that there’s a place to toss everything you don’t want. This makes cleaning out rooms and sorting through attic junk much easier. Rather than moving piles from one place to another, you can get junk out of the house and out of your life.
Kids can use the dumpster too. All of Small Haul’s residential dumpster rentals have barn-style doors that allow easy access for even the youngest member of the family. So let the decluttering party begin!
Decluttering with Kids
Try these basic tips to get your kids motivated to help with decluttering. You may be amazed (and pleasantly surprised) at the results!
#1. Teach kids the value of tidiness.
Most people do better with a new task when they understand its importance and why they’re being asked to do it. Children are no exception. The more they grasp the importance and reasoning behind putting things away, the more likely they are to follow through. That being said, kids often learn better when they don’t realize they’re being taught. A good way to do this is through stories and real-life examples. Have a discussion about putting toys away or the consequences of not doing so (someone gets hurt tripping on toys or toys get lost forever). Ask them how they would handle specific situations. Be flexible with the conversation, and they’ll start to grasp the concept. Many children act on it too.
#2. Make sure everything has a home.
It’s easier to keep a place orderly when everything has a home. Set your kids up for success by investing in as many storage containers as needed to house all their toys, clothing, and school supplies. Show them how to put items away at the end of each day. Make cleaning up part of the bedtime routine. The earlier children develop the habit of putting things away, the less clutter there is to deal with later.
#3. Teach kids about recycling.
It’s never too soon to teach kids to take better care of the planet. The concept of recycling offers many opportunities for mini-lessons that can be imparted while sorting glass from plastic or cleaning out closets. Topics such as what products can be made from recycled plastic, how you can use old newspapers, or what happens to sea animals when the oceans get polluted are all good ones to get little brains thinking along the lines of reusing and recycling.
Encourage kids to come up with new ways to use old things. There are lots of blogs and YouTube videos that teach ways of repurposing items. Make that a Saturday project. Kids learn by doing, and you’ll have fun turning old things into something new together.
#4. Make decluttering fun.
Turn decluttering into a game. See who can clean up their room the fastest. Turn on fun music and dance around the house as you declutter. If you rent a dumpster for a day, set a timer to see who can race out to the dumpster the fastest or keep track of who makes the most trips to the dumpster to get rid of stuff. Be creative, but always keep safety in mind. We don’t want little ones getting hurt!
#5. Work with your kids.
One of the best ways to get kids to declutter is to work alongside them. This fosters a sense of camaraderie and companionship and helps build healthy relationships. When kids see that you’re willing to do what they’re being asked to do, they’re more likely to jump in and get the job done.
#6. Model the behavior you want to see.
It’s hard to get kids to grasp the importance of putting things away or decluttering spaces if you don’t practice what you preach. Children learn by example. To get kids involved in decluttering, model the behavior yourself. Keep the main living areas tidy, put dishes away promptly, hang up jackets, and put shoes away when you take them off. Whether you realize it or not, kids are always watching. You may gain willing little helpers without even trying!
For Kansas City Dumpster Rental, Call Small Haul Containers
Small Haul is Kansas City’s resource for residential dumpster rental. All our containers, including our small dumpster rentals, have barn-style doors, so they’re easy for every family member to access — even the little ones. Just walk the old toys in, drop them, and walk out. Kids will get a kick out of helping Mommy and Daddy, and you’ll be happy they’re learning the valuable art of decluttering at an early age. One can only hope it will carry over to that first apartment or dorm room…