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Old 06-15-2007, 02:11 AM   #4
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Default Re: Collected Past Posts about Cleaning Up

Title: Do you ever take away toys?
Post by: lumpofclay on August 17, 2005, 02:58:13 PM

As your children get older, what kind of requirements do you have for them taking care of their things/toys? Do you have daily pick-ups? Or a rule about putting one thing away before getting out another?

If so, how do you enforce your rules? Do you ever take away toys for their lack of caring for them?

I encourage the girls to pick up as we go through the day, but sometimes they get carried away and have quite a few things out at once. So we have daily pick-ups. DH & I both participate in these pick-ups. I do expect the girls to participate as well.

Our rule has been that they get one reminder, and then they get sat down on the couch. Anything of theirs that is still out after they get sat down gets taken away. The toys (or whatever) go away until they complete a pick-up without getting sat down. (so they get their toys back after successfully completing a pick-up)

Most of the time, the girls are fairly good about picking up. Some days, though, it's difficult to get them to stop playing and pick up. I do not use the "I'm going to take away your toys" as a threat. It's never been treated as such. Pick-up time is inevitable, and losing toys is a natural consequence of not participating.

I'm beginning to wonder if they just have too much stuff. They have been very blessed. They do have quite a bit. We have cleaned out. I did put some toys in containers to rotate through. (Essentially, about half their toys are packed away, and we pull out the other boxes every two weeks.)

They just don't seem to be very grateful for what they have. Is this common? Or is this something that needs to be dealt with to avoid future issues?

Sorry to cut this short. . . we need to leave for an errand right away.

Title: Re: Do you ever take away toys?
Post by: milkmommy on August 17, 2005, 03:12:16 PM

We limit and roate toys she has around five choices of things in her room plus a few dolls cars etc.. I have 4 containers of therapy toys in the living room that she must bring to me to open (some stuff is special and pricy).
  When asked to clean and she is simpily too out of sorts to comply even with help and patience and I have to clean then the toy gets put away on a high shelf  for a bit. Now its ussually untill after a major transitional moment say naptime or till after a meal. Some transitional time that breaks to cycle so to speak.
  For the most part when it seems DD getting un greatfull (a lot) its because shes out grown what she has and its time to give away. I'm keeping watch on whats shes going for as her Birtday and the Holidays approach.


Title: Re: Do you ever take away toys?
Post by: Fourormore on August 18, 2005, 02:58:40 PM

My sister tells her daughter once to clean up.  If it doesn't happen my sis cleans it herself and then puts the toys away for couple of days.  Not the five steps, I realize, but it works for her.
I usually sit in my kids' rooms while they are cleaning.  If they stop working I suggest something they could pick up next.  I don't often help because 1. they don't all like where I put things and 2. they need to learn to be responsible for their own things.  My mother thinks this method is too time-consuming, but I usually do it while nursing or mending.
My oldest is now so meticulous he doesn't need a reminder to clean and if I *do* go in there he asks me to please sit in the chair, not on his bed as I might mess the cover.
Now if only dh would be this way about office.

Title: Re: Do you ever take away toys?
Post by: Mothering by Heart on August 18, 2005, 03:06:53 PM

We have a rule here, "If you can't take care of your things, you have too many things to take care of."

And that applies to the adults as well We are still working on finding the "right" amount that they are able to take care of. It is ongoing.

I tried taking toys away before and they just sat in a trash bag in the garage until I forgot about them and they drug them out again 

Sometimes their floor is barely visible beneath all their junk, and that is when reiterate the rule and we have a clean-up where they need to get rid of things they don't really want or need. The strange thing is, the smallest, most bizarre ~even broken~ piece of whatever turns out to be so crucial to whatever it is they are playing.

So the real work is finding the balance between what they want and truly need. I try to respect what is important to them, but at the same time, we all have to live in this house and one person can not take it over with their things.

Title: Re: Do you ever take away toys?
Post by: lumpofclay on August 18, 2005, 07:12:43 PM

Hey, Amy, so how do you clean out? Do you do it? Do you require them to get rid of so many toys? Or do you just tell them to clean out? Or something else?

Title: Re: Do you ever take away toys?
Post by: Mothering by Heart on August 18, 2005, 07:23:37 PM

Quote from: wigleys on August 18, 2005, 07:12:43 PM
Hey, Amy, so how do you clean out? Do you do it? Do you require them to get rid of so many toys? Or do you just tell them to clean out? Or something else?

It depends

When dh has the kids for a while and I have the time, I will go through and declutter. Getting rid of stuff that I *know* hasn't been played with and probably never will. I usually have it in a "Goodwill" bag(black trashbag) that hangs around until I can drop it off. It all goes in there and I believe only once has anyone inquired about something I had put in there.

Other times, especially with the oldest, we will go through things together and talk about whether having "x" makes her life better or makes her have one more thing to put away, think about, clean up, etc. We also talk about whether someone else would enjoy it, or could use it more than her.

The hardest thing to get them to get rid of is their paper It seems that any scrap of paper they ever wrote one iota on is a treasure :/ And they shove them into all kinds of weird places. When I find them, we sift through those and keep the best ones.

When I find that they are getting overwhelmed cleaning up their rooms, we go through them again. Like I said, sometimes together, sometimes just me.

I don't have any rules about one toy out at a time because I would be spending my whole day monitoring toys. We talk about putting something away when you are done with it, but hey, I still have trouble with that one myself

Title: Re: Do you ever take away toys?
Post by: godsgracegiven on August 18, 2005, 07:31:14 PM

(toddler sleeping in my lap ) We do a clean out too. About 4 times a year we go through everything. We throw out broken toys, donate unwanted toys, and organize the ones they want. Every group of toys. The kids do a toy round up every morning after they clean up. Sometimes the need more direction than others. Hmmmm, one type of toy out at one time. Most toys stay in their rooms. I do it a lot like Denna.  

Title: My Little Saint, about your question.............
Post by: Joanne on May 27, 2005, 06:43:30 AM

Ok, this works... until I get to the step where I start helping him get the toys cleaned up or his shirt put on. He starts jumping an screaming and throwing a fit. I bear hug him and start to speak in his ear, but he just screams louder at me and get REALLY mad What do I do? I hate time outs, but I am resorting to them. HELP!
I'm cutting and pasting the above so the question and answers don't get "ignored" in the 5 steps thread.

How old is your son? I'm guessing 2-3?

First, try some proactive solutions such as making dressing and cleanup as predictable as possible. If you do the same things in the same order as often as possible, kids can anticipate their days. This makes them feel in control (appropriately) and competent. This helps to build them up and minimize their need to seek power inappropriately.

Make cleaning up manageable and fun. "Put away everything with wheels", "Put away everything red"

Make it non negotiable. If it's a command, don't add "please" or a tone that implies a question mark at the end. Don't make it optional by adding incentives "If you clean up, you can watch Little Bear". Incentives make it optional because the child feels they can forgo the prize.

*I* am perfectly comfortable guiding my child's hand to assist them. During the training stage, where I am teaching my children that my words mean business, I will use my body to make sure their body moves towards compliance. Not everyone is comfortable with this level of coercion. That's fine, but it can limit your options.

The getting dressed options here are: do it yourself when it's supposed to be done, I'll do it for you or I'll take the clothes to wherever we are going. That said, some gives only need a bit of naked or jammie time and then are willing to get or be dressed. Hygiene and getting dressed is another area where routine helps.

The 5 Steps are great tools, but they aren't for every situation. GBD has countless solutions.

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