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07 November 2023

The Hidden Rewards of Teaching Your Kids to Clean at an Early Age

Teaching your children to clean may seem like an impossible task, but by starting good habits at an early age, it can make your home a much more harmonious place to be. For starters, it lightens the mental load on the main person or people undertaking the housework, and if a clean and tidy home is important to you, it will also help with your mental health and wellbeing.

A child cleaning with play toys
There are lots of reasons to encourage your children to clean from an early age

Need more reasons? Here are the benefits of teaching your children to clean:

1. It gives them a way to contribute to the household

We all want to feel useful and feel like we’re pulling our weight. By teaching your children to clean, you’ll be giving them exactly this: a way to contribute to the household. 

Aside from giving your child a sense of responsibility, it also sends a message that in your house and your family, you work as a team. And that is no bad value to learn at a young age.

2. It sets them up with life skills

How many of us, when we went off to university or moved out of home for the first time, had all of the cleaning skills they’d need for the rest of their lives? Very few of us can say that we knew exactly what we were doing when it came to cleaning, but by teaching your children to clean at an early age, you will be setting them up with home management skills for life.

3. It can teach them the value of work

Teaching your children to clean can show them the value of work. At the end of the cleaning session, they will be able to see their hard work and how it has paid off in the form of a clean and organised space, therefore showing them that the effort was worth it.

Some parents like to incentivise tasks for pocket money and in some children's bank accounts you can even link automatic payment for this. Personally I'm not a fan of payment for chores because I think it creates the idea that they should be rewarded for contributing to the household rather than the 'we are a family that all works together' message.  However if you have older children who are reluctant to get involved and you need the help paying them for housework might make your life much easier in the short term. 

4. It can help them to appreciate their home – and you!

By getting your children involved with the cleaning, it will really help them to appreciate and look after your home. Furthermore, it will help them to appreciate all that you do for them and for the home to ensure that it runs smoothly.

5. It will help them to learn the natural consequences of organisation

Particularly if you give your children the responsibility of looking after their own space, be that a bedroom or a playroom, it will help them to realise the natural consequences of both organisation and disorganisation. Whether they’re looking for a particular toy, a piece of clothing, or some school equipment or homework, by teaching your children to clean and organise regularly, they will come to realise that it’s much easier to find their items and feel ready for the day ahead in a clean and tidy home. 

6. It gives you a helping hand!

And don’t we all need a helping hand?! Teaching your children to clean, however, is so much more than giving you a helping hand, as already mentioned. But if it helps you out too, then that’s all good!

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