More space is a good reward for cleaning up

I’ve drawn up a “job sheet” for Pearl, in an effort to keep things on track this year.  Now our kitchen is better-arranged, she can dry the dishes and put them away.  Homework is on the list (since it was forgotten for a whole term last year!), and putting her clothes away in her drawers.  When she’s done a whole week of jobs, she can choose a “reward” – extra reading time, a “big people” game night with me and The Dad, computer time, that sort of thing.

Putting her clothes away has been a bugbear, she tends to take her neatly-folded clean laundry and put it on her bed, then sleep on it, ending up with a huge nest of not-quite-clean clothes as well as all sorts of things spilling out of her divan drawers.

When she saw that on the list, she moaned.  “But I can’t put my clothes away, because I can’t shut my drawers!”

I gently pointed out that if her clothes are neatly folded and placed in the drawers, it’s no problem to close them.  Today I helped her sort them out.  Part of that of course was setting aside the clothes that are too small.  One skirt was wept over – a pink one that she got for her fourth birthday and is now too short even to be worn over bike shorts (as well as being four years old, well-loved and getting a bit tatty).  Several tops and jackets were deemed too small despite her attempts to convince me that sleeves coming half-way between elbow and wrist are perfectly fine.

Finally, we were done.  A medium-sized bag of cast-offs awaits delivery to a good home.  A smaller bag of completely worn-out clothes has gone for rags.  All her drawers are neat and tidy, and closed.

“Wow!  I’ve got heaps of room now!” she was surprised at the difference.

Just the point I was trying to make.

© UpsideBackwards 2011.

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