Everyone Helps! - DuPage Children's Museum

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Everyone Helps!

September 8, 2016

Our annual maintenance period (AMP) for refreshing exhibits is currently underway. Staff and volunteers are working diligently to clean, paint and (sometimes) refurbish every area, including exhibits and behind the scenes. This is no small task! We are doing more than checking our seat cushions for coins!

We remove almost every exhibit from its comfortable space and embark on a deep cleaning of the ENTIRE Museum! Each block in Math Connections is scrubbed. Walls are painted, the smallest spaces are dusted and sanitized, and the books are even wiped down — one by one.

And EVERYONE is included in the effort! Play facilitators; visitor services, maintenance, and IT staff, administrators; office staff; and volunteers alike: all join in on the endeavor. This kind of work definitely takes a group effort! Enjoy some of our snapshots from a week of cleaning and…yes, FUN!

Letting young children wield a mop or perform such tasks as help wash windows, tends to fill them with a sense of pride and accomplishment. Inevitably, there will be some clean-up task they are more interested in than others. Here are some things you can try at home to get your little ones involved in “the clean-up” process…

  • Start Young. If your child is walking, then she/he is old enough to start learning to put the toys away when playtime is over. Talk your child through it. “Can you put that book on this shelf?” Demonstrate how it’s done as well. Toddlers love to help and often feel such pride in their accomplishments. If you make cleaning and picking up an expectation within the family, kids catch on quickly and accept that they are an important part of making the household run smoothly and neatly.
  • Have Realistic Expectations. Finding tasks that are within their capability is important. For 2- and 3-year-olds this might mean putting toys back where they belong or wiping off the table. Create a toddler-size mop by taking the middle sections out of a Swiffer!
  • Be Specific. Just saying, “Clean up” is an overwhelming statement, but “Put all of the cars in the blue car box,” is easily understood.
  • Explain why cleaning is necessary. Otherwise, your child will look at cleaning up as putting away the fun.
  • Make it a habit. Fight the temptation to do it yourself. Teach your child to clean up after she/he is done with the task.