As parents, we are always looking for new ways to remove the monotony of the daily grind. Whether it’s running our kids to the bus stop, sports practice, or piano lessons, life can get repetitive. One of the harder things we have to get through is teaching our kids the value of pulling their own weight around the house.
“My wife and I figured out a way to get our kids excited about doing chores. Every week they’re practically begging us to play The Cleaning Games.”
The Cleaning Games
The Cleaning Games is an eBook that documents a parenting experiment my wife and I tried in our home. The purpose of the experiment was to create a game that could be played once a week in order to make doing chores more fun for our kids (8/12 yrs) . You’ll read about our story, how we applied game theory to doing chores, the psychology behind why it works, and why it’s about more than just getting your kids to help with household chores without complaining.
You’ll also get the exact materials that we use in our house to play the games. Each template is customizable, printable and easy to implement.
THE GOALS OF THE CLEANING GAMES
- Create excitement about doing chores (really, it’s possible)
- Use game theory to develop positive character traits
- Embrace the harmony of kids doing what they are told
- Use creativity to make parenting more fun
- Provide tools to make your life a little less stressful
- Generate more smiles
SMALL COMMITMENT, HUGE PAYOUT
The Cleaning Games isn’t the only time we pick up around the house. With a variety of animals including a dog, chickens and two kids the reality is that everyone has to pitch in on a daily basis to keep things running smoothly. Keep in mind, our kids still have chores throughout the week but those are typically more individual things like taking out the kitchen garbage when it’s full. That’s different from what happens during an episode of The Cleaning Games.
The Cleaning Games is about every garbage in the house being emptied, wiped down-whatever. It’s the collection of chores that you need to get done in your home to make you feel like something substantial was accomplished.
Every Sunday our kids look forward to “The Games.” From start to finish, ours takes a little over an hour. That way we have time for both fun and to complete the actual jobs. However, yours can be more or less than an hour. It’s whatever works for your family.
The first 15-20 minutes are totally ridiculous and fun. The game unfolds. Everyone knows what needs to be done and what to expect afterwards. Everybody’s invested.
Oh yeah, I did say “everybody“. Here’s the deal. To make this work, you have to be invested for about an hour once a week. But don’t worry because the nasty behavior you normally get when you need things done will be absent during The Cleaning Games. It may take once or twice to get everyone familiar with the rules and flow, but by the second time around you should know what a genuine “Wow!” moment feels like. Trust me, it’s bueno.
Everyone being invested does not necessarily mean that you’re working side by side with your kids, but it might if you choose to do so. In our games the parents usually wind up with one of the 15 chores. I recommend it. I think you’ll find that working together is (a) actually enjoyable and (b) is not only motivating for your kids, but for yourself as well. It’s a win-win.
So 1 hour. That’s it. If your kids are like ours they’ll be all in right from the beginning once you explain how it works. It’s you, the parent, that has to go all in for 60 minutes a week. Whether you’ve got a tag team partner who’ll share some of the load or it’s just you doing all the heavy lifting, if you’re willing to give just ONE HOUR to orchestrate the miracle of your children cleaning without you having to nag them, then this is for you.
WHY IT WORKED SO WELL FOR US
The Cleaning Games is a parenting experiment that uses a gaming approach to get kids engaged in activities they wouldn’t normally gravitate towards doing, including chores!
The game parodies a popular piece of American fiction, The Hunger Games, to get kids interested in the concept. It’s a way to pair fun with doing stuff that needs to get done.
For the price of a latte you can read about how we successfully used a gaming model to tackle a parenting problem. Give it a try to see just how fun and easy chores can really be.Buy now