Traci Paige Johnson
Cleaning doesn’t have to be a chore. Here are three ways to make spring cleaning fun for kids.
BEAT THE CLOCK
Everyone loves a good race—why not bring that fun and excitement to chores? Set a timer and on the word “Go” the whole family hurries to get their chores done as fast as possible. (But remember: neatness counts!) Compete against one another to see who can make his bed, do the dishes, or sort the laundry the quickest. Or, work together against the clock—can all the chores be finished in under 2 hours? Keep a running log of times and see who can shave off a few seconds each week!
CHOOSE YOUR CHORE
Your daughter complains every time she has to take out the trash—so switch it up! Using paper, attach a variety of chores to a magnetic dartboard. Then, each family member takes a turn throwing a dart to see which chore he or she is assigned to do that week. Darts not your thing? Put each task on a separate piece of paper and pull one out of a hat—or a cleaning bucket!
Introduce kids to old-fashioned bartering. If their chores are done in a quick and timely manner—and they don’t have to be reminded to do them!—they can stay up 15 minutes later (or whatever time you’ve agreed on). Then, let them try for the jackpot: If they do all their chores without being reminded for the entire week, they get to stay up an hour later on a weekend night.
Traci Paige Johnson, a member of KIWI’s editorial advisory board, is a children’s media expert and mom of three. The co-creator of Blue’s Clues and Super WHY!, she is also the founder of Yummico, which makes “delicious media that’s good and good for you.”