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How do you get your kids to return their dishes to the kitchen?

I just cleaned out the dishes from the basement where my teenagers have their rooms. I rarely go down there. I was wondering what was happening to all of my dishes. I was shocked at the amount! Every time I load the dishwasher, I tell them to check their rooms for dishes so that I can wash them, they take off and come back and say that they didn't have any.

I'm so frustrated. I have 6 kids and a 3 story house. I can't go behind them every second of the day. What would you do?

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Asked by kristinas8 at 4:39 PM on Jan. 28, 2011 in Teens (13-17)

Level 8 (235 Credits)
Answers (24)
  • at this age, i would tell them they're going to have to start eating in the kitchen if they can't return their dirty dishes to the sink. its up to you how you plan to enforce that rule.

    my daughter is 4 and learning table manners at school, but even before then when she was finished i would ask her to put her stuff in the sink. she does it just fine with no problems. half the time now i dont even have to ask her, she just does it.


    Answer by tnm786 at 4:40 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • Tell them no eating outside of the table and the kitchen. Stick to it for a week. Have a talk and proceed from there.

    Answer by tootoobusy at 4:40 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • lol my mom has 7 kids (Im the oldest and no longer living there) she just ended up buying cheap plastic dishes when ever she sees them for sale and also buys the disposable kind and makes the kids use those. It's pricey but we were/are all bad about the kind of thing and it just drove her crazy and still does. The disposable has helped her a lot she has most of her dishes at the end of the day.

    Answer by Gnomeofmyheart at 4:41 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • Not wash any dishes. Let them run out of clean dishes to use, only washing what you and your husband need at a given meal. When they want to know what's up, tell them. There's also no reason why they can't wash their own dishes, or at least put them in the dishwasher.

    Answer by misses_nick at 4:41 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • well.. i guess dishes leaving the kitchen should be out of the question
    My son is only 4 and he clears the kitchen table every night by himself. He puts them on the counter not the sink

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:41 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • Ban food form being eaten any where but the kitchen or dinning room if they can't get it together. In a week you will allow them to take dishes into the living room and if dishes are being put away then you will move on room by room form there until they get the picture.

    Answer by But_Mommie at 4:42 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • We don't let our kids eat or drink anywhere but at the kitchen or dining room table, otherwise we would have that problem as well. lol

    Answer by shanlaree at 4:42 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • i would do what one mom said about boycotting cleaning the kids dishes unless they are in the sink. my 3 yr old and 2 yr old take the plates to the sink after every meal.

    Answer by knagsmom at 4:44 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • I agree, make them eat in the kitchen from now on. You may feel ridiculous making teens only eat in the kitchen, but you'll probably save some money too, some teens (and people in general) eat when they're not hungry, so they tend to snack all the time. If they're forced to eat in the kitchen, less snacking at random times. Also, if that doesn't work, each kid gets one place setting with their name on it, they are responsible for washing their own dishes, if they don't have their dishes clean, nothing to eat on.

    Answer by amybaby_19 at 5:03 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • Tell them that as of right now, no food in rooms. I let my teens do that and we ended up with a big bug problem. You should not be having to carry dishes back. Another thought, fix dinner, and then tell them there are no dishes to eat off because they all seem to be in rooms. Make them go get the dishes, wash them before they eat. Actions have consequences.

    Answer by SweetLuci at 5:06 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

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