How We Ended the Dishwashing Battles (at least for now....)

End Dishwashing Battles

I have a large family.

So, we always have a lot of dirty dishes everyday.

Thankfully, alhamdulillah, I also have the "man"power to help out.

But I also have a lot of struggles.

"You didn't tell me to to wash/wipe/sweep that!"

Well, I finally learned to rename the chore from "dishwashing" to "kitchen duty." That has helped a lot. Before, some counters were not wiped. The stove was not always wiped. The wall behind the sink was never cleaned....and the list goes on.

Last week, I had a battle of sorts with one of the kids over sweeping the floor. It had been included in the list of kitchen duty, but because others had slid on this (I hadn't remained vigilant) this child was determined not to mop the floor because "no one else had done it."

So, I sat down and wrote up expectations for the job (ok, so I've done this before), but I was determined that this time I was going to try harder to hold the kids accountable. (ok, I've done that before too). But at any rate, I still sat down and wrote out---spelled out explicitly--the expectations and the consequences for not completing the job correctly (this was where I dropped the ball before being wishy washy on the consequences.) I sat all the kitchen duty helpers down and read over the expectations and posted them up on the cabinet near the dishes.

Kitchen Chore Expectations Ever since then, the kitchen has been almost immaculate.  I can see that the kids are trying really hard. I think they see how awesome the kitchen looked under the new "guidelines." One of them didn't do dishes before bed one night and she automatically did the dishes the next day (as per the new guidelines). No fight, no arguing.

Of course I am being realistic and know that this may not last forever. It's going to take work on my part to be vigilant. I noticed that when I washed the dishes during the day I made sure to wash them as outlined because I expected them to follow the rules, I had to walk the walk as well.

So, I thought I would share our new routine and guidelines in case they might be helpful to others.

Kitchen Duty

Times to Clean Kitchen

  • After Breakfast (start no later than) 10:00 am must be cleaned before 11:30 am
  • Afternoon: 3:00 pm – must be finished by 4pm.
  • Dinner (start no later than 8:00 pm and must be Finished by 9 pm

If you cannot finish by these times, you have to let me know beforehand! Otherwise you get another day!

Clean the Kitchen ( in this Order)

Clear AND Wipe:

    1.  Outer counter (stack dirty dishes neatly on counters near sink and stove)
    2. Both tables AND all chairs

(Do these things first so if you have to go do something else before you can finish washing the dishes, the kitchen doesn’t look like a nightmare) (This is my favorite rule because it gets the kitchen looking decent right off the bat)

Sort the dirty dishes before you start 


  • Start sink with HOT water with soap and fill no more than half way
  • Put utensils in water to soak
  • Start soaking pots and pans
  • Wash cups AND put away immediately after all cups are washed
  • Wash bowls, plates, and storage containers AND put away immediately after all are washed
  • Wash pots and pans AND put away immediately after all are washed
  • Wash utensils AND put away immediately after all are washed (Sort them in the dish drainer by type (forks, knives, spoons, etc) until you finish washing them all, then put them away)

There should be NO DISHES in the dish drainer when you are  finished!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (My second favorite rule because the kids would just wash the dishes, let them pile up in the dish drainer, til they spilled over and not put them away)

Straighten and wipe:

  • Counter where the dishes and spices are stored
  • Counter near sink
  • Counter near stove
  • Stove/oven
  • Sink (and get all food out of the drain)
  • Wall behind the faucet.
  •  Move dish drainers and wipe off counter underneath

Sweep and mop floors

Verify with me that the floor doesn’t need to be mopped if you don’t think it does, otherwise MOP/spot mop it!

So that's our kitchen duty routine which is working nicely at the present?

Do you have a system in place to end the battles?

 photo yellow-ruler_zpstf30f6qm.png

No comments:

Powered by Blogger.