Want to raise independent children with a strong work ethic? Get them involved in household chores from a young age. Many parents don’t consider chores for kids as something that is developmentally appropriate.
But if you observe your toddler, you will see there is a keen interest in the environment. The child wants to know what his parents are doing around the house. Yet many parents distract or drive away their kids when they try to help with work around the house.
The concern is that the child will make a mess or won’t be able to do it by himself. But I can tell you from experience getting children involved in household chores early on helps them grow confident in themselves. Their skills too improve quickly once given exposure to different kinds of jobs around the house.
In-fact having children who help around the house eases a lot of the housework burden from the parents’ shoulders.
Start slow with simple tasks for toddlers and gradually add more complex household chores for kids as they grow.
Let us take a look at
AGE-APPROPRIATE CHORES FOR KIDS
CHORES FOR 2-3-YEAR-OLD
Toddlers are the most eager lot. They are happy to help and interested in the world around them. At this age many children can easily start on simple house chores and work alongside their parents in the home. Chores for toddlers to start are :
- Put away toys and books after use.
- Put dirty clothes in laundry basket and help with folding and putting away washed clothes.
- Simple kitchen chores under supervision like, mixing, adding, pouring, chopping tasks. Here is a great kid-friendly knife set.
- Water plants.
- Feed pets.
- Wipe and clean spills or counters.
- Dust furniture.
Related reading : What your toddler needs from you?
CHORES FOR 4- 5-YEAR-OLD
Preschoolers are getting better with their motor skills and hand eye co-ordination. They are also able to understand instruction better which makes them more independent.
In addition to the tasks mentioned above you can add a few more chores for preschoolers to complete on their own.
- Wash own plate and fill own glass of water.
- Make own snacks like yogurt bowl, cereal bowls or assemble a sandwhich.
- Clean own room and tidy up after play.
- Wear own clothes and get ready.
- Set the table.
- Make bed and change pillow covers.
- Fold laundry and keep clothes in closet.
- Wash own bikes and clean outdoor areas.
- Unload dishwasher.
- Help parent put groceries in the fridge and pantry.
- Sweep floors and wash windows.
Related reading : Cooking with children
CHORES FOR 6–7-YEAR-OLDS
Elementary age children can do tasks more independently. They are able to understand instructions, recall and complete tasks by themselves.
By this time, if you have been doing chores together as a family and have a routine that includes daily chores your child will take the lead and complete tasks on his own.
However, this can also be a time when children express disinterest in chores. There are other new interests that they find more fun than doing home chores.
Keep these changes in minds and determine appropriate limits and boundaries so that the child has an adequate amount of time in the day to complete his chores. Chores help them to be self-reliant and instill a sense of responsibility and giving children that opportunity to be responsible for their own things ultimately makes them confident individuals.
Alongside all the above listed chores, 6–7-year-olds can also do the following,
- Cook simple meals under supervision like scrambled eggs, make smoothies, salads, sandwiches etc.
- Get the mail.
- Make their own daily time plan.
- Organize own closet and toy storage.
- Complete homework independently.
Related reading : How to reduce screen time for kids?
CHORES FOR 8–10-YEAR-OLDS
In time children can take charge of the following tasks,
- Pack school bags.
- Take out trash/recycling.
- Clean cabinets and organize.
- Mop floors.
- Vacuum house.
- Rake the yard.
Children are capable of doing a lot more than what we parents think. When given independence from a young age you will see how confident and self-reliant your child will be.
I hope the examples here help you find age-appropriate chores for kids that encourage independence and give the child the structure he seeks.