How do we keep our children’s bathroom from resembling a public restroom?
Our children have been blessed with the privilege of having their own bathroom. They have also been blessed with the responsibility of keeping it clean. We rotate cleaning their bathroom every three weeks. Each boy gets to clean the entire bathroom every third Saturday morning.
Our process to keeping this bathroom clean:
Remove everything from the bathroom
Sweep the floor
Spray the shower and tub
Spray the vanity
Spray the toilet
We use vinegar with just a drop of Dawn for most cleanings. Using natural cleaners allow your children to clean and you do not have to worry about the cleaners hurting them.
If any part of the bathroom is particularly dirty, we just sprinkle some baking soda after spraying.
First they start with the vanity, cleaning cloth in hand, wipe down and rinse the vanity. (One of the complaints I have recently gotten about this process is: I taught them to use a circle motion while cleaning and dad prefers them to wipe in straight lines). Decide on your cleaning method before or just assign one parent as permanent bathroom helper.
A little vinegar and lint free cleaning cloth is all you need to clean that bathroom mirror, wipe until streak-free and clean.
Second, clean the tub in the same manner, wiping it down, and rinsing.
Third, the toilet is wiped from the very top down to the floor.
Fourth, mop the bathroom floor, which helps clean up any excess water that will end up on the floors.
Finally, once the floor is dry put the bathroom back together again.
Put up a chart
Don’t expect perfection, progress is getting a little bit better with each attempt. We start when our boys were 2, 6, and 8 years old. I would allow them to see me cleaning their bathroom at other time during the week using the same process for reinforcement. Sometimes actions are the best teachers. This also assured me that it was cleaned to my standards at some point without going over their hard work directly.
Instruct patiently and with a measure that encourages them to keep doing it.
If you have one or two small children, consider a Mommy rotation in your weekly schedule. Allow them to have a weekend off; you would be surprise at how often they will offer to help you on your weekend.
Teach them to tidy the bathroom after each use. For example, washing down the sink after brushing their teeth, leaving it dry and clean for the next person. We also apply this to the toilet. I keep cleaning supplies in reach so we do not have the public restroom effect.
To avoid a nasty surprise, remind them to tell you when they have trouble cleaning up or if they have had an event. Its no fun when they throw up and try to clean it, finding it later that night or the next morning can be hard.
Depending on how old your children are, check the bathroom often to give them accountability and reinforce the privilege of having an indoor bathroom. We have gone from after every use, twice daily, once at night, to every few days now that the teenagers are here.
Have the right equipment for the size of your child. We recently switched to using a Shark Pro lift steamer to clean. The boys love using it in the bathroom and say it makes the job easier. I must admit their bathroom has been a lot cleaner.
Did I forget any tips or how would you improve my system, I am always looking to streamline, so let me know in the comments.