Tonight was one of those rare evenings when the kids had finished dinner early, gotten on their PJs, and we still had a good hour before bedtime. I was washing dishes and noticed how grimy the floor looked. So I grabbed a dry-erase marker and began writing letters on my kitchen floor.
I called the girls downstairs, handed each of them a Lysol-covered sponge and a rag, and told them the rules of the game. When I said "Go," each of them had to find the letters in their name, in order. They had to clean off the letter (thus cleaning that tile), dry the tile, and then move on to the next letter.
It took less than 90 seconds and my floor looked remarkably better. Even more surprising, they had so much fun that David started to cry because he felt left out. So Kendra wrote the ABCs on 26 tiles that hadn't been cleaned yet and we cheered David on as he sought out letters and wiped them clean.
By the way, credit for this idea should go to Trish Kuffner and her wonderful The Preschooler's Busy Book.