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Family Dinner Clean Up

This is a simple idea that could work for any aged kids (ok, not babies)... But it has changed our household radically! 

After dinner, my family (2 kids ages 4 and 6) all work together to clean the kitchen and make tomorrow's lunches. 

Everyone helps (kids can put away plastic conatiners from dishwasher, clear the table, sweep, wipe the table, make sandwiches), and no one leaves until it's all done...even pots and pans.

This creates a feeling of comeraderie-sometimes we put some fun music on, or sing together- and it all happens really quickly...because we're all looking forward to the reward:

We all sit down to our own small bowl of ice cream when it's done!  It's nice to sit down and admire your work together while eating a treat.

The benefits are many: 

  • After we've put the kids down, we can actually relax (We used to see the tower of dishes, and postpone it to the morning...which only put tomorrow off to a bad start!)
  • Mornings are better because the kitchen is ready for our breakfast
  • Making lunches are no longer part of our harried morning rush
  • Our kids are learning to clean the kitchen
  • Our family is working together
  • We as parents feel less like servants in our own home...getting help without having to nag...
I like this because it doesn't require anything different, except changing expectations and rallying the troops.
Phyllis J.
I am going to begin this tonight with my daughter and grand-daughter ages 3 and 5. I feel this will be great fun.
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