book review

June 1, 2013

the following is a book review by Tyler Tichelaar at Blog Critics:

If you’re sick of being the person who does all the cleaning, without getting help from your spouse, and putting up with children who think you’re their personal maid, then Team Clean is the book for you.

Author Carol Paul knows all about teamwork, having spent more than  20years involved in her father Coach Wooten’s basketball camps. And she knows what it is to have family members not behave like team players.

For years, she tried to keep the house clean on her own, and she tried hiring maids, only to have to clean before they came. Tired of this situation, she realized if a maid service could clean her house in an hour or two a week, there was no reason why her family of six could not do the same.

And so the Team Clean formula was born. I don’t want to reveal all of Carol’s secrets for how to get your spouse and children to help you clean, and more than clean, enjoy it as part of a regular weekly activity. I don’t want to reveal the secrets because I really believe you will not only benefit from reading this book, but you’ll enjoy it yourself.

For the cover price of $19.95 and the few hours it will take you to read this book and implement Carol’s plan, you will obtain a return on your investment that far surpasses anything the stock market or any financial guru could ever promise you.

Carol’s husband Steve, her co-founder of Team Clean, has estimated that: “If you have two children, three years apart, and they move out when they are 18 years old, and you run Team Clean instead of paying for weekly cleanings, you could save $210,000 in those 21 years of raising the two of them!” And while that savings alone is phenomenal, you can’t put a price on how turning cleaning into an activity that allows the family to spend time together will benefit your family, leading to bonding with your children that will keep most of those rebellious teen issues from occurring when they are older.

I know you’re thinking, “Really — children who want to clean and teenagers who bond with their parents?” I know — I wouldn’t have believed it either, but that’s why Carol asked her four children, now teenagers and adults, to give their unedited opinions about Team Clean in this book. Not only are they wholly supportive of Team Clean, but they went off to college, shocked that their roommates didn’t know how to clean, and they even come home every week still to participate.

In fact, her college-age son Bucky says, “Even if I am not at home, I will usually find a way to get home for it. I will find myself road biking a few towns over just to make it back to Team Clean.” Heck, Carol’s kids have even had their friends want to come over and clean because of the fun and the rewards that come with it.

I won’t get into the rewards, other than to say they are simple and easily put into practice. Carol sets some very clear guidelines around setting up Team Clean as a family activity, including the rewards part. She even goes into examples of what not to do. She applies common sense everywhere, foreseeing issues and emphasizing the importance of sticking to the guidelines.

Beyond the value of family interaction (teamwork), Carol offers detailed explanations of how to divide up the cleaning so it is appropriate to age groups — even two-year-olds can get involved, and not as a form of child labor, but so they feel important, part of the family, and are able to build their self-esteem through their contributions. Carol also includes charts to show how to delegate activities, and she provides details for each room of the house for what is to be cleaned. In addition, this book is simply a lot of fun to read. It’s filled with comical drawings, inspirational quotes, testimonials from people who have participated in Team Clean, and a frequently asked questions section based on comments Carol has already received from people who have implemented Team Clean.

More than anything, what stands out about this book is the teamwork. This is not a book that shows Mom the tricks of keeping the house clean on her own. It’s not even about making your kids cooperate. It’s about establishing a family tradition that will keep the family ties strong. In fact, this simple family tradition has led to the teaching of life lessons for her children. Carol provides a whole list of those lessons in the book, including “Taking ownership of a responsibility,” “Learn to go to work on days even when you don’t really feel like it,” “Learn negotiating skills,” and “Learn a good work ethic, not just to punch a clock.”

Team Clean is going to change your family’s life. In fact, it is a testament to the value of family activities. Not only will Mom get a cleaner house, but Dad will bond with his children, and children will grow up being responsible, secure, and ready to take on life as adults. Buy this book, implement its formula, and get ready for a fun life-changing experience!

​for full article: http://blogcritics.org/book-review-team-clean-by-carol-paul/

Family Almanac

april 10, 2014

the following is an excerpt taken from Marguerite Kelly's Family Almanac Column:

...."This all may seem overwhelming to the young, but they can do it easily and quickly if you follow the detailed advice that Carol Paul gives in "Team Clean" (Aviva, $20) The author, her husband and their four children have been spending an hour a week cleaning their house ever since their youngest was 4 and then they treat themselves to an inexpensive takeout supper.  Families bond in many ways, and this is one of the best.

In The News...

voted 1 of 6 books to buy

december 1, 2013

the following is an excerpt taken Superior Books December Newsletter:

If you really want to make Mom happy this holiday season, give her the help she needs around the house and join in to create a fun and meaningful family event.


Author Carol Paul knows all about teamwork, having spent more than twenty years involved in her father Coach Wooten’s basketball camps. And she knows what it is to have family members not behave like team players.


For years, she tried to keep the house clean on her own, and she tried hiring maids, only to have to clean before they came. Tired of this situation, she realized if a maid service could clean her house in an hour or two a week, there was no reason why her family of six could not do the same.

And so the Team Clean formula was born.


I don’t want to reveal all of Carol’s secrets for how to get your spouse and children to help you clean, and more than clean, enjoy it as part of a regular weekly activity. I don’t want to reveal the secrets because I really believe you will not only benefit from reading this book, but you’ll come to enjoy cleaning with your family yourself.

how much time do you spend maintaining your home

July 31, 2013

the following is an excerpt taken from Sarah Brooks article:

"You read that right. Carol Paul, author of The Team Clean, spends just 40 minutes per week on home maintenance. Married with four kids, they all spend one night per week on different chores — including washing all the sheets and towels, vacuuming and cleaning all the floors, cleaning the bathrooms, tidying the kids' rooms, disinfecting the kitchen and more! Afterwards, they spend time bonding as a family and eating dinner. This system has worked for them for more than 13 years and has alleviated the stress that comes with keeping up a home."


​for full article: http://www.sheknows.com/home-and-gardening/articles/1006895/how-much-time-do-you-spend-maintaining-your-home

10 EASY CLEANING JOBS FOR KIDS THAT WILL ACTUALLY HELP YOU

aUGUST 5, 2015

the following is an excerpt taken from Ellen Niz's article:

"Moms always sit around and dream about cleaning help," says Carol Paul, author of Team Clean: The Ultimate Family Clean-Up-The-House Formula. "'I wish I could have a maid who could be here all the time to help me or at least come in once a week.' I'm like, 'Okay, you have these people who live in your house with you; they're here every day. Why don't you just figure out a way to use them?' Kids want to help."

Paul and her family started Team Clean 15 years ago, donning their cleaning "uniforms" (grubby clothes) and spending 45 minutes every Thursday evening cleaning the house as a family—they've never missed one! Now, even though her four kids are grownups living out of the house, they still return home to help clean their parents' home once a week.
"It became like a family tradition," she says. "It's the one night a week we ordered out for dinner and sat around and watched a TV show together. It was family night in the end."
To start your own Team Clean, Paul suggests coming up with a list of what needs to be done once a week, breaking it into jobs children can do, assigning one or two jobs to each family member, and then teaching them how to do it. "Whatever you have them doing, teach the job correctly the first time," she says. "Have patience with them and give it to them in two or three short, simple steps."
"It's all right to relax your standards, too," Paul adds. "Do you want your kid to end up helping you for the rest of his life? Then make the standards right for his age instead of being so particular that you're not going to get any help at all, ever. Praise them for doing a good job."
Try to do Team Clean the same day and time each week, Paul suggests. "Kids need to know what's coming," she says. "Don't just spring it on them because you're in the mood to clean—and don't have a never-ending to-do list."
Paul prefers scheduling Team Clean for a weekday night to free up weekends and avoid the urge to add to the list of things to be accomplished.
"You're trying to get help, but you're also doing such a good thing for your kid at the same time," she says. "You want to create a family tradition, you want to teach life lessons, and you want to build confidence in your child."
We've compiled a list of Team Clean-approved jobs that take advantage of kids' love of spray bottles and dusters—and how much closer to the floor they are than you—to get them to help you clean the house.

​READ FULL ARTICLE HERE:  http://www.parenting.com/family-time/home/10-easy-cleaning-jobs-kids-will-actually-help-you?page=10


bowie mother takes novel approach to house cleaning

october 4, 2013

the following is an excerpt taken from Sophie Petit's article:

"Ten years ago, Carol Paul of Bowie struggled to get her son, Bucky, to help clean their house. By the time he was in his 20s, she said, he was coming home from college once a week just to help out — thanks to a cleaning “system” Paul and her husband created. She is sharing that system in her new book."

“I would ride my bike 15 miles back home, so it was kind of like a cool way to get home once a week and spend time with my family. You didn’t really think twice about the cleaning,” said Bucky Paul, now 23. He recently graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park, and lives in Baltimore.

He still makes it home every Thursday for cleaning night, he said.

“Kids respond to it how players respond to coaches. To be a coach is to be a salesman,” said Carol Paul, 47, who co-owns a basketball camp and comes from a family of coaches.

Paul runs Coach Wootten’s Basketball Camp, based in Arlington, Va., with her brother, Joe Wootten, and father, Morgan Wootten, a DeMatha Catholic High School hall of fame coach at the Hyattsville school who spent his entire career coaching in Prince George’s County, she said.

Her book, “Team Clean,” was released in June and published by New York-based Aviva Publishing. Paul said she’s a coach selling clean.

The cleaning strategy starts with a game plan: On the same day at the same time each week, everyone — herself, her husband and their four children — gets the same chores that are listed on a chart, she said.

At the bottom of the chart, a chosen family member writes down the post-cleaning reward, which is usually the name of the restaurant the family will order from that night, she said. Next to the restaurant’s name, they list their orders.

“So the entire time they’re cleaning, they’re thinking, ‘Yes! My burrito is coming!’ By the time we’re done cleaning, dinner is basically arriving, and then we watch ‘Survivor,’” Paul said, referring to the family’s favorite weekly TV show.

With everyone doing their part, cleaning the house takes only about 20 minutes per week, she said.

Family members bond without realizing it; no one is on a phone or computer, and everyone is talking as they clean.

“Team Clean is about all these little things that make it not [only about] cleaning the house. It’s become our tradition. Each family is different. One family decided to do a bonfire every night,” she said.

So far, the book has sold 2,100 copies and is available at all major bookstores, as well as online and in e-books, Paul said.

Bucky Paul said his older brother, who lives in Washington, D.C., introduced Team Clean to his roommates.

“They’re all party animals, and they do it once a week and then sit down and eat some food,” he said. “It kind of shows you how powerful it is.”

Carol Paul said the Team Clean concept arose in 2000 after she paid a last-minute cleaning service $150 to clean her house for 40 minutes while she and her family sat around and waited.

“That’s ridiculous,” she said. “I thought, ‘That’s how we should do it, in a team.’”

Michele Cormier, 51, of Bowie lives down the street from Paul and tried the Team Clean system for the first time a couple of months ago after Paul told her about the book.

“Every mom I know feels the same way. We’re sick of nagging our families and our families are sick of being nagged,” said Cormier, who has a son in college who helps out now whenever he’s home. “Now cleaning isn’t seen as a negative thing, and it was for 20 years. It’s not me nagging anymore. It’s we do our stuff together and have fun together.”