I start every school year with lots of plans. The kids are going to come home, do their homework, do some sort of Enriching Activity, do their chores, and go to bed on-time, pleasantly sleepy from a full day of good and productive work. And then as the year progresses, school and other things ramp up, and we slide, and I end up doing all the laundry (for six people! Do you have any idea how much laundry six people produce? Especially four kids who like being outside and get dirty like it’s their job?).
So when summer comes, we reset. We have our summer rhythm — a little work in the morning, some fun, some rest, and some learning. And everyone goes back to helping out around the house.
We’ve got a range of ages, so I adjust their laundry routine according to what they can handle. Here are their chores, broken down by age:
-Preschool and Early Elementary School: Preschoolers and kindergartners are learning about sorting and patterns, so it’s the perfect age to start having them put away their clothes. I fold my four-year old’s clothing (sometimes she likes to help with simple folding like napkins), and bring it to her room, where she is expected to put the correct clothes in the correct drawers.
-Mid-Elementary School: I started having the kids fold their clothes by about 2-3rd grade. It takes them a bit of practice to get clothes folded well, so you have to decide whether to re-fold after the kids do, or whether to let them fold their clothes imperfectly (it’s hard. But good, I think, for kids to have a job that’s all their own.
-Late Elementary or Jr. High School: By now they can do their own laundry.
Walk them through it a few times. Explain the different settings and cycles (though we wash most of our clothes on cold — the method detergent below works great with cold water). And let them do it. Because we do not want our children showing up at college not knowing how to do their laundry, do we? No, we do not.
When I had my son do his laundry last week, he did a lot of this:
because this detergent smells good. And in a family of six, with the dirt-loving kids I mentioned before, good smells are precious and hard to come by.
It really does smell like flowers (like the label implies), rather than laundry soap. For the last week I’ve been getting whiffs of my pretty self, and I’ve been impressed. And it’s pink! And happy! And looks so fun in my laundry room with my polka dot ironing board. Love it.
method is also currently partnering with ASOS on a line of clothes designed to be washed with their lovely smelling detergents. The ASOS clothes are funky, ’70’s inspired, and (hallelujah) machine-washable.
Now. If you’re like me, and go through laundry detergent by the gallon, check this out — enter the coupon code THREEFORME and get $3 off all your online method purchases here. And get those kids to work washing clothes.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
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