Cleanup is Fun!
Cleanup time does not have to be a battle. Simply make cleaning up a game!
Explain to your child that all of his toys have homes, or special places where they belong. Then explain that he needs to make sure none of his toys get lost and must help each one find its home again. (It is helpful to have special places designated for your child’s belongings. You may want to label shelves and cubbies with pictures to help your child match what belongs there.)
Guide your child by having him pick up items by category. For exmple, you might say, “Let’s pick up all the red items first.” Alternately, set a timer and have him try to speed-clean to beat the clock.
The toddler years are an in-between time in terms of development. Your child is no longer a baby, but she is not yet fully a big child, either You will see your chid’s interest in, and possibly her insistence on, becoming a big girl. “Me do” or “Let me” may be a common request from her. You can give your toddler a chance to feel competent by enlisting her help with your activities. Toddlers love to imitate, and yours can learn new skills while bonding with you.
Laundry time can be a fun time to interact with your young child while teaching her sorting and classification skills.
Show your toddler how to sort socks. You can have her put socks in pies according to color, style, or size. See if your toddler is able to match up sock pairs.
Most toddlers enjoy water play, so they will truly love feeling as if they are helping you with this fun activity.
The next time you are washing dishes or other items, set up a bin with some soapy water.
Give your toddler a sponge, and let her wash her toys. Alternatively, let your child join you in hosing off the patio or even washing the car.
Side by Side
Give your odder a chance o feel like a big kid. Your child’s interest in imitation and interaction with you is all the motivation she nees to help out with the chores.
Buy your child a little whisk broom to help with sweeping. She may be able to help push the vacuum cleaner, but many toddlers are frightened by the sound. Additionally, you can give your child a damp rag and let her help you with the dusting.