Laundry: Teaching Kids the Basics.
There are a few basic concepts any kid will need you to share with him if he is to succeed in washing his clothes after he leaves home.
Here are few tips for learning-to-wash kids.
Seems like a no-brainer but... kids who've had mom or dad do the wash until now have never considered the concept.
Clue them in and help them along by placing hampers strategically in the bathroom or bedroom.
Consider adding a "special attention" or "stain"
basket for clothes sporting visible drips, drops or smudges of
everything from finger paints to Cross pen leaks.
If nothing else, it reminds kids that seriously soiled duds need special treatment.
To help new launderers get their wash game on, remind them to treat spills fast by rinsing or blotting away spills as soon as possible to keep stains from setting.
(Dampen a clean white rag and dab on the
stain. You'll see color transfer to the rag. That's how you'll know it's
working.) Then wash the clothes as usual.
Cover the importance of sorting laundry by color - unless, of course, your son really does want a pink shirt to come out when a red and white shirt went into the washer.
Explain that, to keep snags and lint to a minimum, they
should zip zippers, button buttons, brush away lint from pockets or
cuffs, and empty pockets before putting clothes into the machine.
Help them understand how to make wash water temperature choices.
Generally, choose hot for whites or very dirty or greasy clothes, warm for most loads, and cold for delicates or dark or bright colors.
Always choose "cold" for the rinse-water temperature, however;
it saves energy and is just as effective.
Cover the perils of overloading the washing machine. It should be filled no more than two-thirds full of clothes, as you know, for the load to get clean.
And clothes need room to tumble around to get clean.
Remind kids to check washed clothes for remaining stains, and re-treat as needed before drying. Heat sets stains even Mom can't get out.
Dealing With Unknown Stains
How to Clean Jeans
How to Wash Sweaters
9 Common Stains and How to Remove Them
Hot, Warm or Cold?
Liquid or Powder?
10 Wash Day Essentials
Return to Laundry & Stains
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About the Author
Tara Aronson is a native Californian. Having grown up in San Diego, she studied journalism and Spanish to pursue a career in newspaper writing. Tara, whose three children - Chris, Lyndsay, and Payne - are the light of her life, now lives and writes in Los Angeles. She also regularly appears on television news programs throughout the U.S.