As a child growing up I felt like I was always doing chores. There were five of us kids so I’m sure there probably was a massive list of things to do. These days though, kids aren’t nearly as helpful as they could be. Plus we have a lot more stuff than ever before, bigger houses, more cars… so much more to keep neat and tidy.
It’s about teaching life skills.
When they are young and you can see them struggle with even the most basic of tasks, it’s easy to feel they aren’t ready for helping out. Before you know it though, you have an 18 year old who can’t pick up after himself, doesn’t know how to operate any of the appliances in the home and doesn’t know how to wash his own clothes. Will he ever be ready to move out of home or is he going to live here forever???
A little effort initially goes a long way…
Setting basic age appropriate kids chores early on doesn’t have to be difficult. Yes there is the initial learning phase of teaching a child how to do things while waiting impatiently as they try to do it (all the while knowing you can do the job in the time it took to explain it). But you have to think of the long run – life skills, patience, problem solving. It’s not only a good exercise in teaching your kids to respect and listen to your instructions but about practising tasks, which in the beginning are hard, until they are competent at them.
Age appropriate kids chores:
AGE 2 & 3
🗸 make bed (with some help) 🗸 pick up toys
🗸 wipe up mess (with some help) 🗸 take dirty clothes to laundry
AGE 4 & 5 all of the above with a little help, plus
🗸 clean room (with a little help) 🗸 clear & set table
🗸 put away groceries (with a little help) 🗸 basic dusting
AGES 6-8 all of the above, plus
🗸 vacuum & mop floors (with a little help) 🗸 help looking after pets
🗸 fold & put away laundry (with a little help) 🗸 take out rubbish
AGES 9-12 all of the above, plus
🗸 help wash car 🗸 clean bathroom
🗸 wash dishes 🗸 use washer & dryer
AGES 13-18 all of the above, plus
🗸 general cleaning inside & out 🗸 wash windows
🗸 all aspects of laundry 🗸 prepare meals
Whether you agree with it or not, pocket money can be a good incentive to get your kids to do their chores. I like to allocate certain everyday chores as ‘must do without any reward’ and then there are the extras that can be done to earn some extra cash. These chores are listed on a checklist and can be marked off once done. This also helps to define boundaries as once they’re done they can have free time. There is nothing worse then feeling like chore time is going on for hours and hours because mum or dad are calling out chores to do as they remember them.
See you next time!
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