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How can I get my kids to clean up after themselves?

I have tried to make it into a game and they still won't do it. My 6 year old and my 4 year old will if I keep after them but my 2 year old will not pick up toys at all even when I sit with her and help her.


Asked by griffinbb4 at 9:49 PM on Sep. 6, 2009 in General Parenting

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This question is closed.
Answers (7)
  • My DD is almost 3 and the best thing we did was give her 3 chances to pick up her toys. If she didn't, out came "the tub"(large Rubbermaid container) and all the toys on the floor got put into the tub for 1 week. Once she had nothing to play with except 1 plastic play plate and a spoon for an entire week. Each time she would ask for her toys i would explain to her that since she didn't pick the toys up they got taken away. She got the message! Now she picks up her toys every night before she goes to bed!

    Answer by alexsmomma06 at 11:03 PM on Sep. 6, 2009

  • when you find out please let me know my kids are grwon and married but they still leave a mess at my house when they visit

    Answer by mamak57 at 9:56 PM on Sep. 6, 2009

  • Hi,

    My 2 year old used to do that too. There are many ways to manipulate them, it just depends on each child as to what works

    What i did when the floor got too bad was say "hey we have to clean up some of this mess before we get anything else out so we can find our toys" and then he couldn't get out any more toys until he cleaned up.

    Another thing we like to do is see if we can beat the timer on the microwave to pick up. I tell him i'm setting it for 2 minuntes and usually set it for 3 so he really can beat it.

    If those don't work, try the "we have to clean up before we go out to play" or "so we have room to sit down and have our cookie snack". Just as long as something fun or yummy follows it usually works. If they don't clean, they don't get a cookie or get to do whatever you said was happening.

    It's tough at first, but once it becomes a regular part of the day, it gets a lot easier. Hope this helps!


    Answer by joulieen at 10:10 PM on Sep. 6, 2009

  • my kids like to sing and dance so when i want them to clean up their toys i sing the 'clean up song' and they like it and help clean up. my son who is only two is starting to clean up after himself and can repeat some of the words to the clean up song.

    Answer by amanda1122 at 10:34 PM on Sep. 6, 2009

  • I find chore charts helpful. Also, if I have to do it for them there is usually a consequence involved such as losing the toy or my older children have to pay me a dollar to clean up after them if they were given 3 chances and did not do it.

    Answer by A.Day at 11:35 PM on Sep. 6, 2009

  • My mom explained to me that I would either clean up after myself or the toys would go in the trash. It might sound a little cruel, but it worked!

    Answer by Avarah at 1:56 AM on Sep. 7, 2009

  • when my girlies were little if mommy had to clean their room mommy CLEANED it good and their toys were put in a bag in the shed until they kept their rooms clean for a week. i guess some old fashioned ideas still work. Kudos to oyu moms who use the- if you don't pick it up you don't get to play with it- method

    Answer by mamak57 at 11:53 AM on Sep. 7, 2009