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Household chores: Why they are good
Household chores: Why they are good

Household chores: good for children, good for your family

Children can learn a lot from doing household chores.

Doing chores helps children learn about what they need to do to care for themselves, a home and a family. They learn skills they can use in their adult lives, like preparing meals, cleaning, organising and keeping a garden.

Being involved in chores also gives children experience of relationship skills like communicating clearly, negotiating, cooperating and working as a team.

When children contribute to family life, it helps them feel competent and responsible. Even if they don’t enjoy the chore, when they keep going they get the feeling of satisfaction that comes with finishing a task.

How to get children involved in chores

It’s best to start by choosing chores that work for children’s ages and abilities. Chores that are too hard can be frustrating – or even dangerous – and chores that are too easy might be boring.

Even young children can help with chores if you choose activities that are right for their age. You can start with simple jobs like packing up toys. Chores like this send the message that your child’s contribution is important.

It’s also important to think about chores or tasks that get your child involved in caring for the family as a whole. A simple one is getting your child to help with setting or clearing the table. Jobs like these are likely to give your child a sense of responsibility and participation.

Chores for children of different ages

Here are some ideas for chores for children of different ages.

Toddlers (2-3 years)

  • Pick up toys and books.
  • Put clothes on clothes hooks.
  • Set placemats on the dinner table.

Preschoolers (4-5 years)

  • Set the table for meals.
  • Help with preparing meals, under supervision.
  • Help put clean clothes into piles for each family member, ready to fold.
  • Help with grocery shopping and putting away groceries.

You can keep children motivated by letting them change jobs from time to time. This is also a way of rotating chores fairly among family members.

 

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