Last year I learned several great tips on how to keep my classroom clean without me ever lifting a finger. It is important that students take ownership in the classroom and realize that it is theirs and they need to keep it clean. It is a good lesson in responsibility. One of the ways I transferred this responsibility to my students was by having the Queen of Clean visit every so often. After school I walk around the room and look for the cleanest desk. I look for two nice neat stacks, no scrap papers and books stacked from smallest to largest. Then, that students will find a note from the Queen of Clean on their desk along with a Pixi Stick. The kids love this and it really does help to keep the desk organized.
Now onto the room. After watching a great video at teachertipster.com I learned about Magic Trash. If you do not use this in your class, you should! Several times a day I say "Magic Trash" and watch the students scatter picking up papers, organizing the book shelf, washing the board and many other tasks. They work very hard because the object of the "game" is that the teacher spies one item in the room out of place and the student who cleans or fixes that item will be the winner. I give the winner a Starburst. My students beg for the game and I love it because I can focus on more important things.
Finally, I assign classroom jobs. The jobs include tasks like making sure the books in our class library are in the correct spot and that know one leaves any jackets or lunch boxes in the classroom at the end of the day. These jobs change often and my students love the responsibility.
If you would like a copy of my Queen of Clean click the picture below for a free download. I did not come up with the saying on the cards and if you know who did I would love to give credit to that person.