A while back, I polled a bunch of large family mamas on how they have made it easier to get through their long list of responsibilities...in this case HOMESCHOOLING. This is the long list of their responses! Do you have something to add? Comment, and I'll add it to this list!
Wash a big kid and a little kid together so there is no real sorting and then the big kid helps the little kid fold and put away their laundry.
With clothes, socks, shoes- I put a colored dot on them, each child has their color, it helps most the kids who are in the same size, close to size (because really, no one wants to share socks and underwear!).
Laundry baskets are for dirty clothes only. Each basket is allotted a specific color Also each kid has a different color hanger and rack for clean clothes.
We have colored towels and a long set of hooks on one wall so the kids can use one bath towel for a week before washing.
If we're going out to the farm, we always wear the shorts from the day before (if they're not noticeably dirty) since they will be very dirty by the time we get home!
I have written instructions on the washer and dryer for when I ask the kids to help with laundry.
I also got rid of all of their old towels and bought them each a different color towel so we aren't constantly washing towels.
Do it everyday. Never let it pile up. I wash, the kids dry, fold and put away everyday as part of our routine.
Four loads by 4:00! And, yes, that means PUT AWAY!
Our family schedule for laundry is: Monday: hubby; Tuesday: dd14; Wednesday: ds15; Thursday: me, Friday: dd10; Saturday: towels and sheets. If it's not done on your day, you have to wait until your day comes again. All mine do their own clothes. They also clean their rooms on Saturdays.
Laundry is a "big" chore for my oldest son. He washes, drys, folds and puts away 1 load every morning. I continue it throughout the day as I am able. That ensures that at least 1 load gets done daily!
Once the kids hit 12 they take over their own laundry.
I put operating instruction in sharpie on the washer/dryer after giving them each laundry lessons.
Towels are done the day we clean the bathrooms. Sheets are done the day we clean the bedrooms. Then we usually do a load almost every day.
Use a wringer if you can. The entire was can be done in a few hours. Mama operates the machine, kiddos sort dirty laundry and hang clean laundry. Pretty awesome to not think about laundry for a couple of days. Saves money, too.
We generally wash 3 loads or so per day. We fold on the dining room table and I have it all sorted in age order for everyone. It has to be put away before we can eat, so we don't have a problem with it.
I wash laundry every day and I don't let ANYONE touch my washing machine, as too many things get broken around here, and that is one thing I don't want to go without. Especially since I have two in cloth diapers and soon to be 3 in cloth diapers, I don't want to even not have a working washing machine for one day. I let the kids hang the clothes on the line and take them off the line. And then several kids work together on fold the children's clothes and putting them in the rack system that we have in our large laundry room. I fold and put away my hubby's and my clothes.
The most time consuming part of laundry for me was sorting all the piles and then walking all over the house to put it away. So now I sort by person, not color. Each person has their own basket. I have one basket for towels, sheets, etc. It's super easy now, especially since my husband built me the "laundry dresser" from Anna whites blog. I do 2-3 loads a day including cloth diapers.
Children are responsible for gathering, washing drying and putting away all towels. It makes a dent in the overall job. Towels are used twice before laundering. Same for bed clothes such as jammies and lounge pants, they are laundered only once or twice a week. Mesh bag for socks so they stay together.
My family closet!! I don't know how I would function without it!