TIF-Today Is Fun: Line Clean Up Game

A fun activity . . . with an ulterior purpose. Kids make messes.  There’s just no getting around it: messes and disorder are a big part of having children.


How do you get  your kids to clean up after themselves?  Do you threaten?  Do you offer incentives?  Do you beg?  (I admit it — I've tried all those techniques and more!)

Well, here’s a fun way to get the kids cleaning up.  And it comes in particularly handy on those days when the mess is huge and your home resembles a disaster area.

Here’s what you do:

  1. Grab a piece of paper and some crayons. 
  2. Tell the kids to start cleaning the mess up.
  3. Tell them, “For each item you put away, I will draw one line.”

That’s right: for this one, you’re the one doing the drawing.  They’re doing the cleaning.    

At the end of this episode, you’ll have a clean house, and the kids will get to admire some new art to admire.

You don’t have to think too hard about what to draw.  Whatever you choose will be something of an exciting revelation to the kids when they’re done cleaning.

You might object to this ploy.   You might say, “But you’re not teaching the kids the intense suffering that follow big messes!  You’re not teaching kids to just put their noses to the cleaning grindstone and get it done!”  Well, I guess I’m guilty as charged.  But the end result here, of course, is an end to the mess.  Not suffering.

I hope that your kids enjoy this one – and I hope they do a thorough job cleaning up after themselves!