Kids and Chores

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It’s never too early to ask your kids to help you with chores around the house. You can even start as early as two years old. While children mature at different rates, you can still determine what age appropriate chores are best suited for toddlers, kids, pre-teens and teens.

If you have toddlers at home, they can certainly help you by: making the bed; picking up their toys; feeding the family pet; helping you put laundry into the basket; or cleaning up spills. These chores would be most suited to two and three year olds. You can teach your toddlers to do their chores by making a game out of it; or improvising different ways in which they can help. It will give them a sense of pride and accomplishment. The point is not for them to do the chore perfectly, but to get them in the habit of helping.

For four and five year olds, you can ask them to help you set the table; dust around the house; help make cookies; help you carry grocery bags (as long as you make it light for them). Six and eight year old can really get into the chores by taking care of the pet they’ve always wanted; help you vacuum the floor; take out the trash or fold the laundry.
You can even ask them to help you prepare meals. Think of the experience they are getting at this early age.

Your pre-teens will have their work cut out for them. Some of the more vigorous chores can be relegated to outside work: rake the leaves; wash the car; help clean out the garage. If you need help inside the house, they can certainly help you prepare meals, dusting and vacuuming the house; wash dishes or clean the bathroom. Certainly they would be old enough to make their beds; clear their room of debris; organize their toys, etc.

Teens can do almost any chore you ask of them. Don’t expect it to be done exactly as you would have done, and be sure to notice and comment on your teen’s helpful efforts. Teens can prepare meals, clean the kitchen, wash the car, do laundry, iron, just about any indoor and outdoor chore.

Think of the important life skills you’re teaching your kids when you assign them chores. Check out this chore chart to keep the chores organized.