21 Tips for Cleaning, Decluttering & Organizing

It’s not easy keeping a clean house while homeschooling! However, cleaning, decluttering, and organizing your home can make a huge difference in both your productivity and your state of mind.

We asked veteran homeschoolers to share their best tips for cleaning, decluttering, and organizing. Check out their advice below and know that you are not alone in this homeschool journey!

21 Tips for Cleaning Decluttering and Organizing

Tips for Spring Cleaning

1. Be Okay with Good Enough

Be okay with good enough. It’s all right if the house isn’t perfectly clean. Be okay with a cup in the wrong place, or a spot being missed as they clean. As they become more competent because they are cleaning, it will get better

– Ticia, Adventures in Mommydom

2. All Caught Up is a Myth

We have to gently remind ourselves there’s no such thing as “all caught up” or “all done” because it never ends. If you’re buried under housework and overwhelmed, you definitely need to focus on that for a week, or even two. Put homeschool on pause, get the kids involved (or send the kids to grandma’s for a day), ask a friend to come help out – whatever you can do to feel like you’ve got your head above water

– Amber, Classic Housewife

3. Cleaning with Teens

Teens don’t look at cleaning the way moms look at cleaning. If we say clean your room, they hear pick everything up off the floor. Planning ahead is crucial. Decide who is going to do what. Teens don’t like to be bossed around or micromanaged, so it is best for them to know ahead of time what they are expected to do.

– Amy

4. Front Door Box

Take some time while you’re cleaning to throw things out — broken toys go in the trash, outgrown clothes go in the Goodwill pile, or sorted to be sold. Keep a box by the front door for donations. When it’s full, load it in your car and take it away.

– Dianna, The Kennedy Adventures

5. Imitating Mommy

If you have kids, get them involved. My girls will help me dust or wash walls. They want to do what Mommy is doing! You might have to set some ground rules, though (like NO ONE washes the walls after Mommy has!) or do a little bit of teaching before getting started. Put on some music and make it fun.

– Bonnie, The Koala Mom

6. Prioritize

Just like in life, you make the most time for your priority relationships. With housework, you prioritize what is most important to you and your spouse to have done on a regular basis. Counters are important to my husband. Floors are important to me. So, we make those two things a priority to keep clean and tidy. Know that those are the two hardest things to keep clean and tidy in our home. But when it happens, usually at the end of the day… Ahh! It feels so good!

– Kristi, Kristi Clover

7. Freshly Made Bed

Make your bed first thing in the morning, every day. As early as age four a child can be taught how to pull up a comforter and straighten a pillow. This simple task helps your home to have a straightened look all day long. If you accomplish no other homemaking task in the day you will know that at least one task is accomplished. Plus, it’s a lot more inviting to climb into a freshly made bed at night than it is to have to straighten a rumpled one.

– Renee, Great Peace Academy

8. Earning Money

Something that has motivated me to clean out closets is money. Our community has a huge consignment sale for children’s clothing. It is a family effort that starts right after the Christmas tree is put away. We have a “fashion” show, if it is too little then it goes to the “sale closet.”

– Lana, I Love My 5 Kids

9. Make It a Lesson

If you’ve never taught the kids how to clean the cobwebs, beat the rugs, or wash the windows, now is the time. Make it a homeschool lesson by reading about the history of spring cleaning. Consider your children’s ages, then teach them the why, the what, and the how of one cleaning task. Turn on some upbeat music and let them have a go at it. You may be surprised if you actually have fun.

– Melanie, Psycho with 6

10. Give Yourself Grace

Honestly, I don’t always get to my housework. My house definitely does not stay as clean as it did before I started homeschooling. I should give myself some grace in that I now have five kids in the mix. I started our homeschool journey with three. I heard someone say the other day that trying to keep your house clean with kids is like trying to brush your teeth and eat Oreos at the same time!

– Kristi, Kristi Clover

11. Declutter Before You Clean

Before you begin spring cleaning a room, take down the curtains and open the windows. Sunlight usually gives people more energy. If there are a lot of shelves that can house potential clutter, take everything off every single shelf and surface and put it on the floor. It may sound chaotic, but it is really not. Having completely bare shelves and surfaces is really cathartic. It will also give you an idea of how much space you really have in your room.

– Amy

12. Pay Your Children

I pay my children to clean and then offer to take them out for dinner if they can pay for their meal. Yes, I am that mom who told her son she would pay him to purge his room. I handed him a shopping bag and told him to fill it and I would give him $5. Trash and unwanted items counted toward filling the bag. Joyfully the youngest son actually had funds to pay and was eager to eat his favorite meal out. I got a purged room and a night off from cooking.

– Stacey

13. Housework is Teamwork

We are a family, and our kids are part of our family unit. Housework is teamwork. It’s not just about mom running around trying to serve everyone else. Everyone needs to be pitching in. By taking the time to teach them the most efficient way to do chores, you will bless them for life! Don’t expect perfection as you are training them. It takes time.

– Kristi, Kristi Clover

14. Child-Sized Fun

Your kids can do a lot more than you think they can. When they are preschoolers, get them a child-sized broom and mop and let them sweep. They will love to be involved in helping, and you don’t have to worry about what they are doing as you are cleaning. Let them unload the dishes from the dishwasher. From the age of three, my kids unloaded their own plastic cups and put them away

– Ticia, Adventures in Mommydom

15. The Miracle of 20 Minutes

It’s amazing what you can do in 20 minutes. We each take a zone and clean for 20 minutes. Sometimes, we work together racing from room to room. It’s hard to teach and learn in the middle of a mess. We do the same thing again in the afternoon. Spending 20 minutes here and 20 minutes there matters.

– Amber, Classic Housewife

16. Rainbow Days

Every homeschooling mother I know struggles with housekeeping in some way. Whether it’s trying to keep the dining room table cleared off for suppertime or whether the problem is a larger, more systemic issue, the fact that we live, learn and play in the same small space all day long will impact the cleanliness of our homes. Some days might feel like “treadmill days” – days that ended right where we began. Some days might feel like “avalanche days” – days that took us by surprise and swept us further backward than before. So when those “rainbow days” come along – those productive days that give you hope – it can make all the other days feel much more bearable.

– Amber, Classic Housewife

17. Find Your Routine

An important step in managing your home is to find a routine to help you in your homemaking efforts. Right now my routine is pretty basic. Throughout the week, I do nothing but basic upkeep. A load or two of laundry each day, dishes, floors, etc. Then on Saturdays, I clean. It takes about two hours, but for now, it is what works for me. Everyone’s homemaking routine will look different; you may need to break up the tasks into smaller pieces each day like I used to. You may not want to clean on Saturdays and would rather have the day off. The key is to find a homemaking routine that works for you and then manage your home to the best of your ability.

– Misty, Finding Joy in the Journey

18. Reassess Your Belongings

Cleaning is pretty easy once a room is decluttered. The yearly spring cleaning session is the perfect opportunity to reassess how important things are and what your child has grown out of or no longer cares about. My son collects really big LEGO sets and his favorites are the Star Wars sets. Several years ago he was really into Ninjago, but they are no longer important to him, so I know now that he is old enough to let them go. (By letting go, I mean letting them go into a bin in the basement. Neither of us will ever be fully ready to get rid of LEGO sets.) There are also video games that he has played through and will never play again. These can go into a large plastic bin to be reassessed for trading in for other games or giving away to friends. Same goes with the books that he has read but will never pick up again.

– Amy

19. Hire Help

Don’t feel bad about hiring a housekeeper. During overwhelming times in my life, having a housekeeper kept my house afloat (and saved my sanity.) Having someone to help out means that I can dedicate time to the things that need serious attention like a new baby, or a child struggling with phonics.

– Dianna, The Kennedy Adventures

20. Determine Your Problem Areas

Depending on your home and family size, you’ll likely have different problem areas. Focus in and identify 3 priority problem areas. Do you have trouble getting supper ready on time each day? Are you always behind on laundry? Is the dinner table too cluttered to eat at? For us, having supper ready on time used to be a priority problem area. While we do need to work on all the problem areas, we need to start with the priorities. Now that we have a good system down for things like supper, we can focus more on other issues.

– Amber, Classic Housewife

21. Budget for a Cleaner

Truly, if you can find money in your budget to hire a cleaner to come every other week or even once a month for a deep clean, it will be so worth it. I literally told my cleaners what my budget was and asked them what they could get done for that amount. I thought through what was the most important thing that I wanted done and what would help me the most — and had them do that. I’ve been really amazed at how much they can get done on the budget I gave them.

– Kristi, Kristi Clover

What’s Your Best Advice for Spring Cleaning?

Share your best advice for Spring cleaning with us below! We would love to hear what helps make life easier for you!

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