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Making Cleaning Fun

Let's be honest: you could probably think of one or two things you'd rather do on a Saturday morning than chase dust bunnies. Why would your kid think anything different? Believe it or not, there are some ways to make chores less painful  -- or at least bearable  -- for them, and for you:

* Give kids a say. When they have some control over what goes where, children gain pride of ownership, says consumer reporter Nellie O'Brien, "and they're more likely to get rid of broken dolls and melted crayons, because those things are sullying up their space."

* Turn on the tunes. Upbeat music makes cleanup more fun.

* Use rewards. Each voluntary effort earns a marble or a bean in a small jar. When the jar is full, your child can have friends over for a party or enjoy a special "date" with Mom or Dad.

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