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Cleaning with kids teaches them so much more than cleaning

A little girl sitting at the kitchen counter doing paper work.

Being a parent involves a lot of things.   Guiding our kids through a daily routine is part of that job.   Teaching our kids what needs to be done as a child and what it looks like to do these things as an adult is part of that job, as well.   Today, I’m teaming up with Clorox® to talk about how I use cleaning as a part of parenting.

Yes, being a mom means saying NO more often than we want to and yes it means guiding them through the fun times, too.   It’s all part of the job, and it’s the most important job we’re ever going to have.

I’ve realized that every moment is a teaching moment.  Our kids are always watching us, listening to us, learning from us.   Those times when you are just going through your day without a second thought are the times when your child is watching you, seeing what it looks like to be a responsible adult.   Our kids are counting on us to create these positive interactions with them that will create those healthy habits and strong relationships down the road.

It’s no secret that I love to have a clean home.   I don’t know why, but for me, it feels like when I am providing a clean home when I am putting dinner on the table when I am taking care of the dishes… it all feels like it’s my way of showing my family that they matter enough to do these things.  

When I was a child, my mom always kept our house clean, and she always had dinner ready.  I was just telling her last week that I can remember lying in bed on the weekends, sleeping in much too late, listening to her unload the dishwasher and vacuum the living room.   I never said a word because who was I to be sleeping while she cleaned?

With that being said, I can also remember waking up to my list… my list of chores for the day.  That list was filled with things that I thought were so chore-heavy, but now realize they were nothing compared to what she was doing: dust the dining room, sweep the kitchen floor.   The reason that I did them without (too) much complaining was that I loved to hear how she thought that I did a great job.

When your mom tells you that the house smells great or looks so nice after you’ve cleaned, it akes you want to work even harder next time.  I loved hearing her compliment me for a job well done. It was a motivator. I also liked cleaning with her. It’s what leads me to do the same with our children today.  

Cleaning is the perfect time to talk to your kids when you have nothing else going on but cleaning with your child.   Grab a Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes and clean the countertops while your child is sweeping the floor.   No phones are out; the TV isn’t on. Ask those questions that don’t get asked every day.   

When you are playing a game or drawing a picture, show your kids that you can wipe up a mess or clean a sticky spot.   
A little girl standing at the table playing a board game.

Teach them that you aren’t ignoring these things, but instead, you are carrying on with the task at hand (having fun while playing) and taking care of responsibilities at the same time.

A little girl sitting at a table playing Candyland.
While I’m busy spraying out the sink and talking about how it’s important to clean because we are killing germs that can make us sick,  it sparks little conversations like last week when our son told me how germs spread and what experiment they did in class to teach this lesson.

A kitchen counter with a spray  bottle of Clorox resting on it.

Unexpected conversations happen every day and it’s great to get a chance to talk with our kids to hear them.   I feel like it’s more than cleaning.

A little girl sitting at the kitchen counter doing paper work.
Yes, I am cleaning and yes they are helping, but we are talking and bonding.  We are learning from one another.

When our kids see me taking my Clorox® ToiletWand® System  and scrubbing the toilet, they know that I am taking care of the house. I can laugh with them about how messy three boys can be when it comes to a bathroom, and they can see that cleaning it isn’t so bad.   Just clean it using the Clorox® ToiletWand® System and pop the top off into the trash can.   Take my Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes, wipe off the seat & base and throw it in the trash, too.  Five minutes of my time and the bathroom looks so much better.   

These things are important because I want them to do these things when they are older.  I want our kids to see the importance of taking care of their home and family.

Raising four kids is more than just “raising four kids”: it’s teaching them what it looks like to be an adult.  It’s taking these small moments like cleaning the kitchen, cleaning the bathroom and doing laundry… and it’s turning it into so much more.  It’s turning it into a happy time, a time that they enjoy spending with me, a time when we are bonding, laughing, talking and connecting.

Not only does cleaning with your kids set you up for great conversation, but it lets your child see a great example of how to take care of the people (and things) that you have and love.

Safety Note: Remember… children shouldn’t use Clorox®  products if they’re under the age of 18.

PS- You are welcome to check out my printable chore cards for kids 
White paper with text on it.


Hi there!

I’m Becky, a former elementary school teacher turned certified child development therapist and blogger. I work at home with my husband and together we are raising (and partially homeschooling) our four children in the Carolinas. I love diet coke, ice cream, and spending time with my family.

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