Children will tell you what they need. Sometimes it’s not always in the most pleasant ways and it may be difficult to hear, but they do tell you.

I have plants hanging in these macrame hangers. E and V keep shaking one of them, causing dirt to fly. The first few times this happened, I thought they just didn’t realize what was happening and they were trying to figure the cause and effect out. However, after observing it happen a few more times and them excitedly yell, “mess mess, clean clean,” while grabbing the booms and dustpans, I realized they are doing it purposely. They were intentionally swinging the hangers to cause a mess–all because they wanted to practice sweeping!

While we have plenty of opportunities to clean (I’ve been reading too many organization books, haha) it’s clearly not enough and they desire more practice. So more opportunities had to be created.

I wanted to provide them sweeping opportunities, but in a way that didn’t put my dear plants in harm’s way or create bad habits–like dumping dirt on the ground, no good can come from encouraging that, haha.


So what was the solution? Pom-poms! Pom-poms, their broom, and dustpan—and we’re good to go with a simple cleaning activity. To provide them with a target, I placed a square on the floor, with painter’s tape. This creates an ideal area to sweep their “mess” to and is all part of the process as they learn the steps to sweeping up messes. Now they can practice using their dustpan to dump the mess into their trash can.

*We have a broom and dustpan set, similar to this but bamboo, that I found at Winners. They also have two minis, this (which they have used and loved for over a year now) and this (the dustpan was stepped on and broke really easily, which was disappointing due to the price).*

Does your little one enjoy helping with chores, too?

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