Teaching Kids How to Clean Up

On July 1st, only in Quebec, is what is considered “moving day”. It’s when most leases to apartments are up and students in the city decide to move back home for the rest of the summer. Here in Montreal, moving trucks are double parked, if you can get a moving truck at all because they are booked way in advance for this one day, not to mention so many construction blocks in the city that are limiting where you can park at all…are you imagining complete chaos? Good, because that is exactly what it is. I avoid downtown like the plague on July 1st. Luckily, I never had the misfortune of a lease being up on the first of July, but I know many friends that have.

As a mama, July 1st marks something different for me. It begins our summer, as school is out, and most spring activities have come to a close. As a family, July 1st truly starts our summer vacation mode. I love having the boys home, relaxing by our pool, inviting friends over for barbecues, and taking it down a notch with less scheduling and more chilling.

The woes of parenting! Helping kids now early how to clean up helps the whole family.

But as any mama can attest, summer comes with it’s share of difficulties. Having three boys at home reminds me of how I need to instill responsibility in them, even if we are on summer vacation. We still have soccer games and practices, and there always seems to be things lying around…and while I don’t mind the odd pile here and there, I know I need to teach them how to clean up after themselves, and our home.

So, for their future apartment roommates and my sanity, I have decided to teach them cleaning basics and I have enlisted help from Libman. New to me, Libman is a family-owned, fourth generation business since 1896 that specialize in cleaning products. If anyone knows family and cleaning up, it’s Libman! What drew me to Libman, was their green initiative in their products. Their broom bristles are made from recycles water bottles, and their steel rods are made from recycled steel. I love when a company this seasoned has important values in helping the environment.

Back to Basics

I distinctly remember on weekends, my sister and I would be dusting furniture, cleaning the bathrooms and moping the floors in an effort to help our parents and show responsibility in the care of our home. Did we do it willingly? That, I forget. And I wish I had my parents were here to ask them how that really went down in their eyes. But I can truly say that I am grateful for the responsibilities they instilled in me, because now I take care of my things and my home.

I don’t feel that I have done enough of that for my boys…yet. When they were very young, they would sit and “help” mama clean up and do laundry. For them, it was the act of mimicking what I was doing, for me it was having them beside me, not helping but being together.  Then school hit, homework and activities took over and when I ask them to clean up now it’s a battle. This summer, we are going to change all that.

Game on! The boys are ready to tackle any cleaning conundrum now, thanks to Libman.

Find the Right Tools

When you have the right tools and the right guidance, cleaning up doesn’t have to be a big deal, and it can even (dare I say it) be enjoyable. I took the Libman products for a test drive before introducing them to my boys, to know who would like what the best.

What I know, is that I cannot make any one chore overwhelming. I can’t tell my boys to “clean a room” without giving guidelines. Since they were young, I had to take my boys and show them, as well as have them try things out in front of me, and that’s how we are tackling how to clean.

It wasn’t long before they were cleaning *without* my help (yay!).

We take for granted what we know and what they don’t know. I caught myself saying things like “how come you don’t know how to do this?” only to realize, I hadn’t shown them yet! This is a life skill they will not learn anywhere else, so it’s essentials to get to the basics of cleaning for kids so they learn from scratch. This way, when they are asked in the future (be it tat home, on at work, or with their own family), they know how and what to do. It will also give them confidence knowing they can easily do it on their own.

Start Good Habits Early

I’m not going to lay down a chore chart for you or suggest steps for each room. But I will tell you what I know is essential for cleaning anything. This is what I learned from my mama and I what I am teaching my boys. Plus, we have adjusted a few things along the way, to suit my boys.

  • Always start with the counters first and work our way down. For example, in the washroom, begin with counters and sinks, then, the tub, toilet and finally the floors.
  • Have hooks for bathroom towels – each of our boys have a different coloured towel
  • Keep storage bins (with wheels) under beds
  • Hang t-shirts – no more folding only to get them in a wrinkled mess
  • Keep a basket in the drawer for socks
  • Have cleaning products and tools on the ready, not put away in a drawer on another level in the home
  • Help everything have a place (ex. shoes in a closed shelving piece in the front of home)
  • Keep a basket for sports uniforms
  • Keep a basket for library books
  • Limit TV or other activities until the work is done (makes it go faster and more consistent)

And one final note: we don’t pay our kids to clean up. I know, I know, it seems to be the norm these days, but let’s be honest with ourselves; it does not set them up to be helpful citizens of society or even their future family homes if they feel they deserve a pay for helping out.


Great news! Libman is offering two of my readers a Cleaning Kit valued at $300! Perfect to tackle cleaning with your family or the dreaded moving day aftermath!

To enter, follow @libmanca on Instagram (mandatory to win).

For extra entries:

  • Tag a friend on Instagram that would love to win this Cleaning Kit (More tags, more entries! One tag per comment)
  • Share this giveaway in an IG story and tag @libmanca and @ask_mamamoe (2 extra entries!)
  • Follow me (@ask_mamamoe) on Instagram (let me know in a comment please)
  • Comment below with your most difficult family cleaning challenge

That’s it!

Two winners will be chosen randomly. This giveaway is open to Canadian residents. Deadline to enter is July 4th, 11:59pm. Good luck to all!

Libman products are available at Canadian Tire and Home Depot. To learn more about Libman, visit their website.


Disclosure: I was compensated for this post. All opinions, however, are honest and my own.

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Mary yu June 26, 2019 at 9:17 am

Following both on IG @mary_yu_

Mary yu June 26, 2019 at 9:18 am

Cleaning is challenging with two young kids who climb into the laundry basket when you’re trying to fold clothes.

Marlene J June 26, 2019 at 9:29 am

Mybeautybug46 IG
Cleaning the bathroom ..uggg.hate it but has to be done
Have done all the steps above

Toby June 26, 2019 at 9:32 am

Followed both Libman and you on IG as ToCo11

Toby June 26, 2019 at 9:33 am

Getting the kids enthused!

ivy pluchinsky June 26, 2019 at 10:43 am

I follow you on instagram ( @IvyMandias )

ivy pluchinsky June 26, 2019 at 10:44 am

Getting the kids to help is always a challenge

Shauna June 26, 2019 at 10:47 am

I follow you and Libman on iG! Thanks for much for the chance to win!

Shauna June 26, 2019 at 10:49 am

My most difficult family cleaning challenge will be heading my way next month … we move into our new home in July, and while it is a BEAUTIFUL country home that checks every box of our forever home, the previous owners did not have the same standards of cleanliness as my family.

I plan to go through the home room by room, top to bottom, scrubbing from the baseboards up, until it is sparkling clean!

Shauna June 26, 2019 at 10:50 am

On instagram I am @for_eleanor

Jennifer P. June 26, 2019 at 2:28 pm

I follow on IG (@ontheroadalot)

Bita Guzman June 26, 2019 at 2:36 pm

My family’s most cleaning challenge is to decide who does what.

Jenny June 26, 2019 at 3:08 pm

followed on instagram (jemsw16)

Jenny June 26, 2019 at 3:12 pm

Shared on an insta story! and tagged friends!

Jenny June 26, 2019 at 3:15 pm

My most difficult family cleaning challenge is keeping the house clean during the summer when the kids are home 24/7! They keep me on my toes!

Dianne G. June 26, 2019 at 4:21 pm

I follow on IG.

Dianne G. June 26, 2019 at 4:23 pm

Since I am a messy cook keeping the floors clean is our biggest challenge.

Rebecca June 27, 2019 at 2:16 am

following on Instagram @rebeccamytong

Rebecca June 27, 2019 at 2:17 am

I find the most challenging to find time and energy as we have 2 young kids who we are always busy feeding

Judy June 27, 2019 at 11:56 am

I’m in a very small apt with way too much oversized furniture. These products look like they would be easy to navigate around and under the furniture. Following on Instagram @bohojudyto

Jennifer P. June 27, 2019 at 12:39 pm

Our most difficult family cleaning challenge is our floors – it feels almost impossible to keep them clean. Our youngest drops food all the time, for one. Then there are all the little bits and sparkles from play dough, arts & crafts etc. We also do a lot of playing outside which results in a lot of “in and out” through our front door, so lots of dirt etc. gets tracked in even though we take our shoes off at the door. Add in cat hair… I vacuum at least twice per day. And the spills in the kitchen and dining room need scrubbing at the end of each day too. It’s exhausting trying to keep up.

Alayne Langford June 28, 2019 at 11:33 am

Cleaning up after a family day at the beach can be very challenging, with sand everywhere!! Thank you for this amazing giveaway! 🙂 @mamalangs5

Monique L.S. June 28, 2019 at 12:57 pm

Follow both accounts under @minty_mo99. Liked & shared & tagged. 🙂 Thanks for the chance.

Monique L.S. June 28, 2019 at 12:58 pm

My most difficult cleaning challenge is keeping the rooms tidy of all the little toys and clutter — I take them out, and somehow more seem to move back in. And also all the crumbs and bits of things that the girls leave on the floors. I have to sweep/vacuum the kitchen after every meal.

Elaine G June 28, 2019 at 2:17 pm

Follow Libman on IG as @elaing8

Elaine G June 28, 2019 at 2:17 pm

Tagged friends on your IG post

Elaine G June 28, 2019 at 2:18 pm

Follow you on IG as @elaing8

Elaine G June 28, 2019 at 2:18 pm

The Bathroom…I hate cleaning the bathroom.ughhh

Sarah Newton June 29, 2019 at 5:12 pm

Following you both on Instagram. My biggest challenge is keeping the main floors clean in the summer when my kids never want to wear shoes. Haha.

Karla Sceviour June 29, 2019 at 5:38 pm

I follow on instagram and tagged friends! @Ksceviour

Karla Sceviour June 29, 2019 at 5:43 pm

My most difficult family cleaning challenge is keeping up with the laundry! Is there ever an end??

Delee June 29, 2019 at 9:32 pm

My most difficult family cleaning challenge is getting the whole family excited to clean and stay cleaning when I ask. My 7 children are good little cleaners when they can focus but it doesn’t take long before they are bored of it or a fight breaks out with one proclaiming ‘I never made this mess.’ Lol. The kitchen is the most high traffic area that I wish would stay clean and struggle with daily.

Done on IG as well – @rider_girl16 💚

Denise M June 30, 2019 at 1:14 am

My most difficult challenge is getting my kids to consistently put their things away. I have a laundry basket. Why don’t they use it consistently?!

Denise M June 30, 2019 at 1:15 am

I follow you on Instagram (@dremccrea)

Betty S June 30, 2019 at 5:21 am

My most difficult challenge is having a self feeder, I know she will get better, but right now so much lands on the floor and it can be hard to keep up with the cleaning

Betty S June 30, 2019 at 5:22 am

following on instagram @harriette106742

Heather Sibley July 1, 2019 at 1:46 pm

Following on IG as @sibleyh

Heather Sibley July 1, 2019 at 1:46 pm

My most difficult challenge is keeping the bathroom clean

Linda July 2, 2019 at 6:23 am

I follow @libmanca on Instagram (@libbyh068)

Linda July 2, 2019 at 6:24 am

I follow @ask_mamamoe on Instagram (@libbyh068)

Linda July 2, 2019 at 6:25 am

Our my difficult cleaning challenge is cleaning under the furniture.

Michelle July 2, 2019 at 3:34 pm

I’m “okay” with most household chores except LAUNDRY. It seems to be a never ending chore.. there’s the separating, hanging the clothes on the line and once you’ve tackled the folding; you have to put it all away in the drawers. UGH, and then it starts all over again the next day.. with two kids anyway. Followed you on Instagram.. @michelleford__

HEIDI C. July 3, 2019 at 7:40 pm

One of our family’s cleaning challenges is the inability to put things away. Apparently, it is Mommy’s job to do it or to clean around the messy area.

HEIDI C. July 3, 2019 at 7:41 pm

Following on Instagram @heidicr

Florence Cochrane July 4, 2019 at 9:46 am

Following on IG @fcochrane2019. My biggest cleaning challenge is cleaning windows.

LILLIAN BROWN July 4, 2019 at 10:06 am

I follow on ig . lillianmb23

LILLIAN BROWN July 4, 2019 at 10:06 am

I find my biggest challenge is keeping my bathroom clean.


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