You may have tried chore charts. Perhaps you’ve turned the task of tidying up into a game. Maybe you’ve offered pocket money or attempted strict routines or belted out the “Clean Up Song” 27 times in a row (hey, it miraculously works when your kid’s teacher sings it, right?).
It could be time for a more drastic tactic to get your children to put away all their stuff. One mum’s solution: “Fucket Buckets.”
Jessica McGinty of Mishmash Moments posted on Facebook: “Today I got the kids fucket buckets. If they leave it laying around, it goes in their bucket. If it’s still there at bedtime it goes in the [trash] bin because fucket if I’m cleaning it up.”
Harsh, maybe, but undeniably effective.
The strategy can be used with kids of all ages — McGinty’s blended family includes children ages nine, seven, seven, six and two. For a gentler alternative, instead of immediately taking the items to the dumpster or donation centre, some commenters suggest letting your kids earn their belongings back with more chores.
I am not opposed to this system, though it would take some real willpower to pull it off. Are you really going to toss that iPad laying on the floor? Or your four-year-old’s special stuffed bunny that he can’t sleep without? Not to mention, you as a parent are still technically picking up things.
Still, as long as your kids understand that this is how things work, that they better put away that dinosaur or Play-Doh ice cream set before going to bed or else they’ll be gone by morning, having fucket buckets around can make you a little saner, and your house a lot more orderly.