Many families have a tradition of getting all the family members to do chores around the house. This holds true for kids as well – and for good reason. The fact of the matter is that chores assist kids in learning to take responsibilities, and their assistance gives their parents a bit of help around the house.
Indulging your child in different chores has plenty of benefits to offer. As humans, every single one of us, including our kids, needs to feel needed and to know that we are making a contribution. However, there is no way for children to feel that way unless they have chores to do to help out their parents and make contributions to the family. It is for reasons such as these that it is recommended for you to hand over a few responsibilities to your child as she grows up.
Back in the days, children used to be a fairly important part of a family’s labor force. History shows us that children used to help out on farms and ranches, in factories and in stores. Although things have changed in many countries and children now go to school instead of helping out their parents, there is no reason why your child cannot be a valuable asset to your household. Here’s a bit of information about the different chores that you can get your child to help out with:
7 Get your kid involved in cleaning up the house
To start off, you need to get your child to understand that you expect her to take care of her belongings. Give her the responsibility of cleaning up her own messes and make sure that she fulfills them. As your child continues to clean up the messes she makes, she will continue to learn to respect her things and pick up after herself. It may take a while for her to learn this lesson, but when she does, you can rest-assured that the effort you put into it will be totally worth it.
Getting your child to clean up after herself requires a lot of encouragement. Yes, you need to give your kid all the encouragement in the world so that she may gain interest in cleaning up after herself. For this purpose, suppose your child has left her dishes after dinner, it is highly recommended for you to call her back. You should also tell her that you expect her to clean up in common family living spaces, but while you are at it, you should allow her to be a tad bit messier in her own bedroom. Even if your child is a toddler, she will be able to clean up her toys – the best part is that toddlers actually find cleaning up to be fun!
Develop her habits at a young age
You really can’t expect your child to clean up your messes, right? For this reason, you shouldn’t get her into the habit of doing the same to you. You shouldn’t have any hesitations at all in expecting your kid to pick up her own toys and put them away when she’s done playing with them. If she’s a younger kid, you may need to help her out a bit, but it is highly recommended for you to get her in the habit at a young age.
6 They can pick up their toys
Kids are prone to creating an immense mess on a daily basis. They work like little human tornadoes and have no hesitations whatsoever in strewing the entire contents of their toy shelves onto the floor in a blink of the eye. What’s most frustrating about this is that they actually seem to enjoy all the chaos they manage to create. Just the sense of having their things close at hand where they can easily be touched and played with seems to intensify the fun for them. But there’s nothing fun about it when you step on or trip over toys on the bedroom floor, in the hallway and even in the kitchen. It is for reasons such as these that you should encourage your child to learn to put away her things.
If you have a toddler, it will be fairly unrealistic for you to expect her to take care of all her things by herself. Kids so young just don’t work that way. For this reason, it is recommended for you to share the work with her – you get to tackle the tougher jobs (such as putting her books back on the shelf), while she handles tasks that he is capable of (putting her toys back in place). To keep her motivated, you should consider turning the tasks into a game. For instance, set a kitchen timer as you both start your respective chores and see who finishes first. You could also turn tasks into a learning experience – point out colors or shapes as the two of your sort the toys.
Break it up
Don’t ask your kid to handle multiple tasks at once. For instance, get him to make a pile of her books first, then have her put them away. Once she’s done, ask her to put her dolls in their place – she won’t feel overwhelmed this way.
5 Get her to help with her siblings
In order to teach your child about patience, compassion and love, it is highly recommended for you to get her to take care of her siblings. For instance, while you make a phone call, your daughter could keep the baby bush by making funny faces at him or sing songs. If your child is around 6-years-old, you could easily get her to play games and make believe with her younger siblings. Your older child can even learn to baby sit and read stories – as part of your child’s contribution to the household, she should learn to take care of her siblings. But no matter what, remember that you should never leave your children unattended without a responsible person to look after them. If you have to go out, teach them about emergencies and leave a number for them to contact you in case the need comes up.
As a parent, you need to teach and encourage your children to nurture one another. It would be a good idea for you to get your older child to read a bedtime story to her siblings. For younger children, you can get her to give her elder sister a kiss when she’s crying because she’s fallen and hurt herself. All of these initiatives will go a long way in getting your children to bond with each other too. As time passes by, you should take a step back and let your children look after each other by themselves too. Also, don’t make them feel like trouble makers in case something goes wrong.
Learn to embrace conflict
One inevitable fact of family life is that of sibling rivalry when you have more than one child. You can’t really expect your children to support each other all the time and at times it’s just best for you to let them be. Help your children understand that getting upset and feeling frustrated is totally normal and that you are always there to help them find positive ways to work out their differences.
4 Let your child do the dishes
As your family continues to grow, so will the number of dishes that you all use on a daily basis. For this reason, it is highly recommended for you to get your child to help out so you don’t have to worry about being stuck at the sink all day. With a little close supervision, your toddler can easily help unload the dishwasher. My wife actually gets our sons to help with basic kitchen jobs like doing the dishes and setting the table. We believe that getting our kids to learn the proper way to hand wash pots and pans, clean counters and load/unload a dishwasher is going to be extremely useful for them all through their lives – you should do it too!
Also, if your child is tall enough to reach the kitchen sink, you should encourage her to do the dishes. However, depending on her age, it is highly recommended for you to supervise her with this. While you are at it, make sure that there aren’t any sharp objects in the sink before she starts washing. In most cases, such as ours, kids are generally happy to help out with basic tasks like these, but if your child isn’t interested at the moment, try not to force her into it.
Get your child to unload the dishwasher
Our toddler is literally fascinated with the dishwasher. Back in the days my wife used to lose her cool at him because each time she was loading or unloading it, he would try and climb in it or start grabbing at things. With the passage of time, she decided to let him help out with it. now, he has also learnt to set the dishes on the counter and actually closes the dishwasher door once its empty and goes back to playing.
3 Get them to help you pack lunch
If you find yourself spending way too much time each morning preparing your children’s lunches, it is highly recommended for you to pass the job on to your kids. The thing with kids is that when they pack their own lunches, they learn to make healthy choices that will assist them in being successful and attentive at school all day. The best part is that your children will also start taking pride in their own health and with time, they may even become interested in cooking!
However, don’t try to force or pressure your child into doing this. Instead, it is best for you to ease them into it. For things to work out, start by getting your kids to pack lunches together. Get them into the practice of making sandwiches, after which you can ease them into helping in the kitchen in general. While you are at it, try to keep things interesting for them. For instance, you could try to give them a variety of containers to choose from. Honestly speaking, just letting your kids use a fun container can turn the boring task of preparing lunch into something totally special.
Be as supportive as possible
Yes, it is necessary for you to offer support to your kids when they start packing lunches together. It is vital for you to be around when they do so just to keep them company. Never make them feel abandoned to this task as this will only drive them away from it. However, if you want to put them in charge, just establish the ground rules for them to follow and get out of their way!
2 Get your kid to help you with groceries/food
In our family, irrespective of who went to purchase the groceries, everyone helps in removing them from the car and in putting them away. Of course, there’s no way for our kids to lift heavy bits of groceries, but we make sure that they get to lift light groceries at least to take into the house. We’ve given both our sons their own shelves in the pantry which they help to stock. This shelf together with a drawer in the fridge go a long way in giving them a bit of independence if they are hungry and want to get food themselves.
To be honest, we put our kids to work in the kitchen early because there are so many benefits of doing so. However, we don’t stop at just the kitchen – we take them grocery shopping as well because we wish to teach them a few very important life skills. Whenever I go grocery shopping, I make sure to take at least one of the kids with me every time. Not only do I get to spend some quality one-on-one time with them, it also helps them learn skills like math skills, budgeting and they even learn about nutrition.
Tips on taking kids to the grocery store with you
Before taking your kids to the grocery store with you, it is highly recommended for you to teach them just what you expect from them in public. Also, to boost their motor skills, it is highly recommended for you to get your kids moving. Let them help with pushing the cart, selecting non-breakable items and get them to unload groceries in the checkout line too.
1 Let them help out with laundry
It is extremely important for your kids to know how to do laundry considering the fact that they may one day choose to leave home and live on their own. If your children are careless with their own clothing, it is highly recommended for you to make them launder it themselves. Toddlers in particular have a thing for sorting and carrying laundry so make the most out of their passion. If you have young children, get them to fold towels and other easier items. Kids who are 8 and up are perfectly capable of doing the laundry on their own with occasional help. Even if you do all of your family’s laundry, it is best for you to get your children to help out in some way or the other.
To make things a bit exciting for your little ones, consider giving all of them their own laundry basket. If you can, get them small kid-sized laundry baskets – the ones that are the perfect size for one load of laundry. You can use the same basket to carry laundry to the washing machine, carry the clean laundry from the dryer to wherever you wish to fold it and if needed, carry the folded laundry to the dresser so that it can be put away. Plastic baskets are the best as they are easy to keep clean and can be wiped out regularly.
Teach them to fold
As your kids continue to grow, you should teach them to fold their clothes. This way, they will be able to fold them and fit their clothes in the dresser too. It won’t be easy, but in the long run, this effort is definitely going to pay off for you!