Monday, February 12, 2007

How do you teach kids to clean up after themselves? I get so annoyed because Emma never cleans anything up without being reminded again and again. The other day we spent hours cleaning her entire room and putting every toy in it's own spot. About ten minutes after we were done I walked back in there and she had emptied the entire contents of her dress-up drawer (which is a lot of stuff) and her craft drawer all over the floor and just left it all there! I thought my head was going to explode. She'll come in from outside and just toss her coat, mittens, shoes, whatever, on the floor and it drives me nuts. Yesterday she had pulled a bunch of books off her bookshelf and just left them laying scattered around on her floor. She then wanted me to play Memory with her. Our conversation went like this:

Me: I will play Memory with you as soon as you pick up your books and put them back on the shelf.
Emma: (pouting) But I don't want to pick up my books. Picking up books gives me a tummy ache.
Me: Then who do you think is going to pick them up? (What a stupid question to ask!)
Emma: (brightening) You, silly!
Me: Nope. You made the mess so you need to clean it up. Let me know when you are finished so I can check.
Emma: (heaving a huge sigh) You are being very fusterating to me, Mommy!

Ha.

3 comments:

mom said...

Oh, Sweetie, I am afraid you will have fusterating conversations like this with your kids over and over through the years!

Kara said...

What I have had to do with Henry and Lincoln is give them MUCH less stuff so it isn't so overwhelming for them to put it away. With Henry, I played a game - we got out one toy, pretended to play with it for 10 seconds, then put it back and got out another toy, played with it then put it back and so on. I just had this month long battle with him about his room when I realized he just had too much stuff again. Once I took out the extras, he was able to clean it and it has stayed clean since. Then I add in stuff ever 4-7 days and he finds a place for it. It there isn't a certain place for it, then he doesn't have room.

OC Mama said...

I started to write this big thing, then read the other comments. I was going to say pretty much the same thing as Kara already said. Too much stuff can be really overwhelming.