Teaching your kids how to do laundry doesn’t have to be a chore. You can spice it up by making it into a fun activity – an especially important approach as we are all spending loads (pardon the pun) of time at home. Kids can help out with the laundry process from age three until they reach double digits, when they can be trusted to handle the whole process alone. Continue reading below for a few activities that can help teach your kids how to do laundry.
Initially, you should explain why sorting laundry is important and go through the guidelines you follow, while deciding which fabrics and colors to combine. Then, lay out a few baskets and have your kids sort their dirty clothes into them while you watch. Remember to explain any mistakes they make and be patient – they’ll catch on eventually.
While explaining temperature selections, give your kids a thorough rundown of the temperature options on your machine and go through which loads are best for them. Then, quiz them. Have them go through the hampers they sort and identify which temperature they would use. Once again, explain if you would have chosen a different setting and why.
For younger kids, determining which cycle setting works best can be a challenging task, so remember to explain and offer help as needed. Go through the different cycle settings on your machine, which typically include Perm Press, Heavy Duty, Delicate and Normal cycles. Most of the loads your kids will wash will probably contain T-shirts, jeans, socks, towels and underwear, which are efficiently washed on the Normal setting. Make sure to provide examples of loads that qualify as delicate, perm press and heavy duty loads.
Perhaps the most labor-intensive aspect of doing laundry is folding and putting it away, but you can make this a family bonding opportunity by working on it together. After showing your kids how to fold different articles of clothing, consider setting up an at-home “Laundry Olympics.” Give each child a hamper of clean laundry with similar clothing (i.e. two towels, three t-shirts, two pairs of pants and six pairs of socks) that is not yet folded. Then, have the kids race to see who can finish folding their clothes first while enforcing neat folding practices.
Laundry Incentive Activities
Once your kids have gotten the hang of the laundry process, introduce them to laundry incentive activities like Laundry Bingo or a Laundry Chore Chart. Have your kids cross off tasks as they complete them and once they complete several tasks, give them a reward of your choice, such as screen time or an allowance.