Today, I want to share my experience with giving children chores to do around the house. Tasks for the little ones.
Here are a few questions I often asked myself but often got stuck with when it came to answering them.
- How much housework do you think your children should be doing?
- Before we even get there, is it fair to give them chores to do around the house?
- If yes, what chores are appropriate for what age?
Well, after years of trying out different things, I finally came to this conclusion,
“If children are able to make a mess, they should be able to tidy it up.”
Don’t you think? No, not because I am lazy, but because I find it almost unfair not to involve children in something as important as this.
Where else would they learn if not at home?
When should they learn it if not when they are still young, living with the best teacher – mummy?
I don’t know about you but I believe my job as a parent is to prepare and equip my children for the future. Whether I like it or not, they will not be with me forever! Right? I have a duty to make sure they learn certain things that will make life easier for them. So that they don’t only survive but also live comfortably when the time comes.
Besides, I also want to give my children the feeling that they belong, that they are a part of the family – the team. I want them to know that their participation is needed to keep the boat from sinking. They love that.
Make the task age appropriate, and it works perfectly wonderful (Hmmm! Is that good English?). The expectations must also be adapted from child to child, because each child is different and age is sometimes really just a number. (Yes, it may sound unfair that child A ends up doing more than child B (older), but it might be that child B is not yet able to do what child A can do, despite the age.)
I also found one secret: Work together! Yep, it usually works better and is also more fun for children. Nobody likes working alone, “The more the merrier”. I sometimes reward my children for certain chores to makes it more attractive to them. Yeah, I know it is not always necessary but it does help.
Did I get you excited? Are you ready to expand your team? Get the kids involved?
I’ve put together a list of tasks children should be able to do – by age. But please, bear in mind that you should only give a child a chore that he/she can handle. Going over the top can lead to frustration, which we do not want!
2 to 3 year olds:
- Clean up toys
- Help with making the bed
- Help to feed the pet
- Dust lower shelves and furniture legs
- Dry spoons and unbreakable dishes
- Pick up the laundry and bring it to the laundry basket
- Stack newspapers
4 to 5 year olds:
- Sort toys
- fold napkins
- Sort socks
- Help unpack and store groceries
6 to 8 -year-olds master the following additional tasks:
- Tidy their playing area and bedrooms
- Water plants
- Sort laundry
- Put away clean laundry
- Set the table
- Help in the kitchen
- Help to wash the car
9 to 10 year olds are old enough to:
- Make their own beds
- Wash sink and bathtub
- Help with cooking
- Prepare small snacks
- Wash dishes
- Fill up the dishwasher
- Dust furniture
- Sweep the floor or vacuum clean
- Help in the garden
Eleven-year-olds and above
Yes, they can gradually take on adult tasks. They might complain, but most of the time, they are also proud to be able to do things grown-ups do. These tasks include:
- Plan and cook meals for the family
- Wash their own laundry in the machine and tumble dry
- Clean windows
- Change light bulbs
- Polish furniture
- Mop the floor
- Wash the car, polish and vacuum the interior
Give it a try ladies. I’d love to know how your children help around the house. Just leave a comment below.
My tree gonna grow!