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How to make her clean her room?

Posted by on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:09 PM
  • 20 Replies

Ok so i have a 4 year old dd. She shares a room with her 9 year old sister. The 4 yo is a huge princess and will not help to keep her room clean. It's a fight every day. I've shown her how to do it, done it with her... and she just ends up sitting and playing. her older sister is getting really miffed with her as she creates a mess then doesn't clean it up. and will even say " you clean up my mess!" I've yelled at her, taken toys away, put her in time outs... She just doesn't do it at all. I will stand there watching and she'll clean it.. but it takes like 2 hours to get her to do it even then and it's a constant prodding to get her to keep cleaning. I have a 8 month old son who i nurse so i just can't stand there all day watching her. i am at my wits end here! suggestions?

This is me:
Lactivist, babywearing, cosleeping, delay solids,  veggie garden growing, turkey baby raising  farm living, country loving Mom To the most excellent kids on the planet: Kaitlyn (1.22.01) Where did the time GO! Ella (2.22.06) Little Miss DIVA! and Matteo (10.3.09) My uncomplicated, sugar sweet, mama's boy! ALL INTACT! genital equality for all!!! Babies are meant to be BREASTFED!!! USE THEM OF LOSE THEM LADIES!!! I AM CANADIAN!! and there for, get free healthcare!! Jealous? you should be!  I BELIEVE IN UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE FOR ALL!

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by on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:09 PM
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by on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:11 PM

LOL I found my solution! mine is four and wont pick up either or didnt. She likes to EAT eat eat eat always wants something to eat and drink... I simply say, well if you pick up your room Ill give you something to eat. If she does a really good job I let her pick whatever she wants. It actually works for me because she likes to eat 24/7.


I been doing this for a week now, today she went and cleaned her room on her own and then came and asked for a snack LOL

by Ruby Member on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:16 PM

Make it a game. Lets find all the BLUE toys and put them away... lets find all the SOFT toys, etc.


by Platinum Member on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:17 PM

 I had the same problem with two of my boys, they oldest and youngest shared a room and it was the oldest that was the pig. I split the room down the middle. Told them that they could go to the neighbors to play if they cleaned that side of the room. My youngest got his cleaned up and went to play, the oldest had to stay in his room until it was done. It wasn't so hard the next time around.

Find something they would enjoy, when your princess sees her sister getting to do it while she has to sit in her room might get her motivated to clean.

by on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:18 PM

 My son is the same way.  I let him know what I expect and if I find him playing instead, he is punished because he is disobeying.  I also set a clock and tell him he has to clean until the clock goes off and then he gets a break.

by on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:19 PM

Cut her toys down to 25% of what she has. Less mess, easier to organize! Rotate every other week, or once a month. She will ACTUALLY play with all of her toys if you do this! You can even get rid of some helping with the storage part. Get a box or bin for every set that has more than one part so everything has a home! 

by on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:26 PM

I had a hell of a time trying to get my 4y/o ds to clean his room for the longest time. Finally I started making a game out of it. He loves being timed; so I would sit in the living room or where ever and say ok let's see how long it takes for you to put all the books on your bookshelf and then I would start counting then the same with putting Toy's in the toy box, clothes in the hamper and whatever else he had to clean up. He would race to do it to see how long it took him.  He cleans him room with no problem now, I just tell him to go clean it, and off he goes.  I also do count downs sometimes for small messes around the house, something like "I bet you can't put all the legos in the bucket before I count to 20" it works every time!

I've also found that it helps if you make them clean their room while the mess is still small.  Like if there are some barbies and some books on the floor, tell her to go clean up her room.  At age 4, it is a lot easier for them to clean up a few small messes at a time rather than one big mess.

by Ruby Member on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:27 PM

Grab some bugs from outside and put them on her floor. Show her that if she doesn't keep her room clean that the bugs will come.

by on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:30 PM

Toss all her stuff into a black garbage bag and hide it somewhere, tell her since she treats it like trash so will you.

Then slowly reintroduce her things.

I did this to the kids I nannied for. The next time they refused to clean I told them the garbage bag would be back in the morning.

I got the oldest up for school at 6am the next day, room was SPOTLESS

Who Died in a Pineapple thanks to  

by on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:32 PM

Don't give her anything to clean up. Tell her that she has until the timer goes off to clean up her room. Any thing left on the floor or not in it's proper place goes to time out. Get some big clear tubs and off to time out her toys go until she can learn to take care of them better. Eventually she'll either get her stuff back or have nothing but a bed and clothes on her side of the room.

by on Jun. 13, 2010 at 5:34 PM

I told my son I was going to throw all his toys away if he didn't clean his room. And he didn't believe me, so I put all his toys in a big trash bag and took them down to the basement. I didn't really throw them away. A few hours later I talked to him about cleaning his room. He started acting really good for the rest of the day, so I gave his toys back. But, I don't really have a problem with him and his room anymore after that.

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