Day 17 – Chores: Everyone Needs Them

A child as young as the age of two has the ability to help keep their environment clutter free and organised. A toddler has the capacity to contribute to the health and welfare of the family home. Children, at any age, have the ability to help do chores.

Chores have multiple benefits. Besides the obvious contribution to keeping the home clean, chores teach secondary skills and instil behaviours and patterns that transfer to other areas of life. Here are a few:

  • Teamwork
  • Stamina
  • Personal pride
  • Respect for property
  • Conservation
  • And more

Children who participate in chores learn the value of contributing to the greater good, earning a wage (if you pay them), prioritising their time, and living in a community. Children who learn the importance of doing chores also learn specific skills required to carry out the work. Skills like:

  • Operating equipment
  • Working with cleaners and chemicals
  • Best practices for cleaning or organising
  • Follow through
  • Solving problems
  • Meeting deadlines
  • Juggling priorities and responsibilities
  • Taking care of domestic animals and/or livestock

Each of these skills give kids an advantage and real-world application. Kids who learn to manage chores have fewer issues coping during the transition into adulthood and have more successful employment and marriages.

You can help your kids by creating age-appropriate chores for them. Here are some simple ideas:

Toddlers:

Help pick up toys and make their bed working alongside mum or dad. Make the time a game and create a routine that your child can predict and get excited about. Sing a song or rhyme about cleaning up.

Infant Schoolers:

Aside from keeping their room tidy and beds made daily, help kids take responsibility for the family pet. Ensure no one has dinner until the pets are fed. Make your child part of the routine in meal planning or helping to make the shopping list. Have your child help unload the car after shopping so they contribute to what it takes to get dinner on the table.

Junior Schoolers:

Yard work and cleaning chores are an excellent way to teach teamwork and build skills. Having kids mow lawns, deep clean, and do manual labour builds stamina, dependability, and the ability to work hard. Help them break a sweat so they understand hard work pays off.

High Schoolers:

Nearly any chore an adult can do, a high schooler can perform. From car maintenance to trimming trees and cleaning gutters. High schoolers should be working alongside their parents during all sorts of routine and occasional chores. Make your child responsible for getting the rubbish bins to and from the curb to teach them responsibility. Designate one night per week for them to make dinner for the family, including cleaning up. Teach them the cooking and cleaning skills they need to be successful when living independently.

Requiring your children to do chores isn’t a form of child labour. It’s a natural way to instil work ethic and pride. Teaching your kids how to be sufficient and able to carry out activities that manage a home is a form of parenting as vital as any other. Create age-appropriate chores for your kids and watch them soar as adults.

What chores do your children do and what age are they?

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