While these kids are too young to start doing the laundry at home, they're not too young to start the learning process of sorting clothes...and putting them away.
As a parent there will be years when you are doing everything for your children, but those years don't last forever. Eventually, your child will start turning into an adult, taking on more chores and responsibilities around the house.
Make sure they know how to do their own laundry before leaving the house in order to avoid problems when they move out or start college.
Here is my version of Laundry for Dummies in Seven Easy Steps:
- Teach the kids to separate their clothes into different groups. The most basic groups are lights and darks, while those can be broken down even further into bright colors, reds, etc. This will help them avoid color damage, which can be very problematic, even to a dry cleaner! Girls should also be taught to separate their delicates into another pile.
- Teach them that washing in cold water is right for colors and hot water is needs for whites.
- Get them to separate sheets and towels from clothes and to wash and dry them separately.
- Explain why it's necessary to wash the laundry in different groups. Color damage is a big one, but it is not the only reason to wash clothes this way.
- Make sure your child knows when to use different temperatures and different washing machine and dryer settings. Each group of clothes will likely require a different wash cycle, like the delicates, for instance. You do not want to put fragile undergarments in an aggressive cycle, and, similarly, you don’t want to wash the bright colors in extremely hot water.
- Make sure they know how much is a full load and to not overload the washer of dryer.Explain how the read the label of detergents so they use the right amount, and teach them when to use a dryer sheet and how it can reduce static in the laundry and make things smell nice.
- In order to make doing the laundry easier, teach your kids about clothing care labels, which are found on the inside of most garments. While many of the symbols are self explanatory, there may be special instructions, such as dry cleaning. Some laundry should not be washed at home, and your children should know the difference between those clothes that require dry cleaning, and those that don't.Teach the kids some other helpful tips, such as:
- checking pockets before putting clothes in the laundry machine.
- turning shirts with beads or glitter decorations inside out before washing to prevent damage to the design.
- cleaning the dryer filter to get the most efficient drying possible
- removing the laundry from the dryer as soon as it is finished in order to reduce wrinkling.
- using a steam iron
And if the kids are going away to college, find a local dry cleaner or laundry with a wash dry & fold service in the area. There are plenty of these services in most college towns. Just search on line or by driving around. Look for the dry cleaners or laundry with “Wash Dry and Fold” or Fluff & Fold” services on a sign in the window. Some dry cleaners or laundries even provide a pickup and delivery service just for the college kids and their laundry.
Need a Break...or Do You Need Someone You Can Depend On To Help With Your Weekly Laundry Chores in Birmingham, Alabama?