The cleanest rooms in my home...drum roll...are my children's! And I don't clean them. How is this?
"Mom, the House Fairy came!"
The House Fairy is Santa's sister. She has a wonderful, interactive website that teaches parents how to model and reward good cleaning behavior. Children watch videos on how to clean and organize. Then the kids race to clean their rooms.
And then the kids wait- cleaning nightly- for the House Fairy to come.
She brought nail polish and stickers. One week she brought a candy bar. Another week she delivered a cute pair of socks. Yet another week the children got a gift certificate for a new book. If the kids slack, she brings fairy dust of some sort to remind them. If a toy is being mistreated, the toys is obviously sad, and goes to stay with House Fairy for a week. It works!
And the children are still cleaning. They love looking at pictures of other clean rooms on-line. Even older children and teens need the positive reinforcement- maybe their favorite treat, a coupon for a day off, special tickets of some sort.
And for me? Yep, House Fairy brings me a little make-up or snack too.