5 Things That Will Make Cleaning Your Kid's Bedroom A Breeze

Piles of toys, dirty clothes, general stickiness: Cleaning your kid's bedroom comes along with a series of challenges. Perhaps the biggest one of all is getting the kids to cooperate in the process. Reporting on a survey conducted by ClosetMaid, NBC notes that parents pick up their children's messes an average of 28 times every week — so, whether clearing a toddler's collection of plastic dinosaurs or a 5th-grader's mounting pile of schoolwork, a parent's job is never done.

Premium Joy reports that the average child will collect a total of 117 toys by the time they turn 13 — over 60% of the 1,000 parents surveyed reported that their child had "too many" toys.

So, given the inevitability of a clean-up day, how can you make sure it's as painless as possible? Start well-fed and well-rested, and keep these five things in mind before embarking on a day of vacuuming, organization, and (maybe) a bit of frustration. Just maybe, cleaning won't be as bad as you think.

Involve your child in the job

Psychologist Dr. Tamar Chansky recommends including kids in the cleaning process from a young age, per NBC. From here, they'll learn concepts of independence and responsibility, tools that will become all-the-more valuable as they get older. For younger children, it's helpful to turn cleaning into a game. For example, hide incentives around the room like stickers, a Hershey kiss, or "coupons" for special adventures, the Child Development Institute notes. A cleaning day "scavenger hunt" will make picking up toys feel less like a chore, and more like an exciting activity — check out these tips that also apply to "fun" house cleaning as an adult

While organizing, make sure to offer clear instructions, also letting them know when they've done something right — hearing a phrase like, "Thanks for your hard work today!" goes a long way. Not only does praise boost self-confidence, it also may incentivize them to take future initiative.

Turn up the music

Music can quickly change the tone of an activity, AIMM notes. Happy music, in particular, has proven benefits, boosting dopamine production and — on cleaning day — turning the bedroom carpet into a dance floor. According to Northern Illinois University's Child Development and Family Center, music can play an instrumental role (pun intended) in teaching motor skills. In this case, a steady rhythm may help motivate your kiddos to clean.

So, before getting started, choose a playlist that both you and your child love. Just avoid "Baby Shark," as it's often regarded as one of the most annoying songs of all time (via The Guardian).

Donate what they don't use, throw away what they can't

Bring two things with you: a trash bag and a box for potential donations. Clearing away excess items will make the rest of the cleaning process easier — after all, clear space, clear mind. Clothing or toys that appear damaged beyond repair should be tossed in the trash for good — you can also check to see if there's a location in your area that accepts fabric scrap donations. If an item is unused or outgrown, apply the "out of sight, out of mind" philosophy. In other words, send intact, neglected belongings straight to the donation box.

Invest in organizational tools

Storage is an important part of keeping any room clean long-term – check out these organizational tips and tricks for every room in your house. For your child's bedroom, in particular, labeled bins will help identify where every item goes. For instance, dedicate one storage crate to Lincoln Logs, trucks, and one to books. Not only will it help the clean-up process go faster, it will also make the things you already have more visible — no need to buy another set of "Star Wars" legos, you have two Darth Vaders already.

So, after determining which items are destined for the trash and which will be donated, divide the remaining toys into easily-identifiable bins.

Polish up with your favorite disinfectant

Time to bring in the reinforcements — and by this we mean your trusty vacuum, duster, and disinfectant. The last step in the cleaning process is sucking up the dust and grime lingering on carpets and bookshelves. Don't forget to vacuum under the bed, too: Out-of-sight areas get particularly dirty. When wiping down grimy surfaces in your child's bedroom, choose from non-toxic cleaners like a homemade white vinegar and water solution or a store-bought disinfectant with a grade A safety rating, per The Strategist. Keep in mind, some products that claim to be "natural" on their label are far from it (via KitchenerClean).