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How do I get my daughter to clean up her room and to keep it reasonable?

My daughter is 7.5 years old and destroys her room while playing. She does not clean up or put away her things. I am tired of telling her the same thing everyday. I help her clean up, but her habits do not seem to change. How do I get her to put things away when it is time to stop playing? She leaves her clothes, food wrappers, juice boxes , toys, markers, books, everything on the floor and does not try to put things away in its place. I show her how, but it remains a mess.

Submitted by marie54321

I hate to say it, but this is about your expectations -- not her room cleaning. Get used to it -- most kids just won't clean their rooms automatically without some prodding and rewards along the way. Create a chart (with her help) with reminders on what you expect from her. When she follows the list -- she gets a small reward. Nothing fancy or expensive is necessary -- even special time with you can work. And try to be unemotional about it -- you'll only get yourself upset, and it won't make her a better room cleaner.

The answers from our experts are for educational purposes only. Please always refer to your child's pediatrician and mental health expert for more in-depth advice.

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Instead of letting this frustrate us, my husband and I told our 11 year old daughter she could keep her room anyway she wanted as long as 1) she helped keep the rest of the house neat and 2) she keeps the door to her room closed ( so we don't have to see it!!). This has worked quite well- we don't nag and she willingly helps clean the rest of the house!! We have also discovered that because she is in "control" she actually cleans her room up more often!
Submitted by tegansmom111
I think most parents face this problem. I think children need to learn some type of responsibility, We should aware them how these thing are important for everyone.
Submitted by cardenacademy
I had the same exact problem with my 10 year old daughter and 12 year old son. I tried helping each of them, going through their respective rooms, showing them places to put things. Bottom line is that they never stayed clean and when they were it was because I did most of the work. I do not expect their rooms to be spotless always but I do expect them to be decent. Firstly, there is no eating or drinking in the bedrooms, period. This isn't only to minimize trash, it's a sanitary issue as well. Secondly, I bought each child a trash can. If I come accross trash in their room in any place other than the can, I take something away for 24 hours. I put their clean clothes neatly on their beds and they are expected to put them away the next time they enter the room. After homework, they are to put their books and shoes away in the correct place. Their dirty clothes must be kept in the basket. Out side of this, their are no other guidelines for everyday cleaning. They are to do these things before any video games, tv or computer can be used. If they break this rule, they are punished from those things for 24 hours. Now on to how I got them to keep their rooms clean all on their own. I created "weekly chores". They get paid a certain amount for each chore. Deep cleaning and vacuuming their bedrooms were included in this, every other Saturday, but with no monitary value. The catch is that they can only get paid on that Saturday and after their rooms are cleaned. No clean room, no allowance. I also do not buy my kids everything they want, just their needs a few wants outside of birthday and holidays. They are expected to save up and purchase many of the things they want. This motivates them to earn the allowance and in effect clean their rooms to do so. After the first few Saturdays, where they spent 5 hours cleaning, I explained to them that they could have their Saturdays back by picking up a few things a day. It took a few months but now their rooms are decent most of the time and they spend an hour tops deep cleaning and vacuuming. The best part is I don't have to nag them. They do it without even being told (and them remind me it's payday!) Hope this helps.
Submitted by dioakeg
Ok frist new rule No food or drinks in the room becuase if you cant throw things away then they stay in the kitchen. I used to go throw this with my daughter she is 9 now and I have no problems here is what I did..all food and drinks stay in the kitchen, Then I gave her a date that her room must be clean by say if it was sunday I told her she had till Saturday at 12 noon, then I showed her A big black trash bag and told her it was called the mom bag what ever is not cleaned up by 12 noon on Saturday she not me would be putting what was not put away in my bag. I kept the bag in my room gave her another date if every thing was cleaned up she could get something from my bag back but only 1 thing did this for several weeks now I have no problem. Look at it this way the room gets done one way or the other but by your daughter NOT YOU!!!! for this to work YOU MUST NOT clean any part of the room ever and if she wants clean clothes to wear then she must put them in the dirty clothes basket. Remember you need her to take care of her self and her things before she gets her monthly visitor or else you will have A huge problem like a friend of mine did. She just cleaned up after her daughter and when that time came her bathroom was well let me put it this way no different then a public one.
Submitted by shyanne2002
I had the same problem and now she is better. 1.) Breathe in and out, think of a plan that will work for you. 2.)Think of what she likes, my daughter likes princesses, so I decorated her room with the theme and have her help me. 3.) I bought large bins for quick pick-ups and labeled them. 4.) I labeled everything for her, hair + accessories 1.5 million of them), bags, hats, shoes in the closet I got a hanging organizer. 5.) Removed all toys into a playroom all the way in the basement. ( If tight on space any small corner a table bins that fit underneath, table cloth will do.) 6.) If she doesn't use it get rid of it, if she has too many of 1 thing have a talk with her about it, for ex. my daughter loves hand bags since she loves them so much I put up a special area full of handbags on display. 7.) Have a designated hamper that she throws her dirty laundry. 8.) All must have a home or it's gone. 9.) Stuffed animals and toys display on shelves low enough for her to reach but tall enough so out of the way. 10.) Since my daughter loves princesses I show her that princesses always put away her toys nicely on display. *** So far this has helped us organize and keep her room neat and clean. Works on 7 and 3 year old. Not 100% fool proof but still working on it some more.
Submitted by RochellieL
I have the same issue. I have offered a reward/allowance at the end of each week-just for my daughter to keep up with her toys- in her room. It does not work for mine.I think children need to learn some type of responsibility,I don't feel having a school age child pick up after themselves is unrealistic. We are teaching little people..
Submitted by workingmom01