We all know the benefits of chores for kids. But in case you need a reminder, doing chores regularly helps children:
Learn Valuable Life Skills
More than likely, any chore you assign your child will be something that they will need to learn to do anyway. By learning and mastering these skills at a young age, by the time they are independent young adults, they will be able to do them without any difficulty whatsoever, making their adult life that much easier. Performing chores can also help them to develop skills that they need now, as children, such as gross and fine motor skills, reading, and following directions.
Do you know that moment when your child accomplishes a task and you can just tell that they are proud of themselves. “I did it!” Completing chores gives your child ample opportunity to feel a sense of pride in their achievements, which is a great boost to their self-esteem.
Contribute to the Household
We all want to feel like we’re being helpful and contributing to things, right? Kids are no exception. Doing chores (and knowing how doing those chores helps everyone) can help your children know that they are contributing to the household.
How to choose age-appropriate chores for your children.
Tip #1: Start early
The first tip is to start teaching your kids early. Some people think that kids shouldn’t start doing chores until they’re in the double digits. I disagree. I think that kids as young as preschool age are perfectly capable of pitching in around the house. They don’t have to be fixing beds or taking out the trash, but they can start doing small things to help out. In fact, at that age, doing chores may seem fun for them. You can even make it into a game, Mary Poppins style. Either way, the sooner that you start teaching your kids life skills through chores, the earlier they will be able to master them.
Tip #2: Teach them the chore in steps
When you’re getting your child to help you with a specific task around the house, one way to make sure it is age-appropriate is by teaching it to them in steps. For example, a 4-year-old can’t do laundry alone. However, what they CAN do is always make sure to put their dirty clothes in their laundry basket. Then, when they are 5 or 6, they can start bringing the laundry baskets into the laundry room, help you put them in the washing machine, and put their clothes away when they are dry. Then, when they are 7 or 8, you can show them how to put detergent in the washing machine and start the load. Then, once they are tall enough to do so safely, you can teach them to transfer clothes from the washing machine to the dryer. And to fold/put away the clothes afterwards. As they grow, their responsibilities do. And it’s a great way to get your child involved in several different aspects of household management.
Tip #3: Help them with the chore first
Another way to make sure your child is doing age-appropriate chores is to help them with the task first. Not only does this give you the chance to show them how to do it properly, it will also alert you to whether or not it’s something they can handle at the time. Perhaps they are perfectly capable. Or maybe you will find that it’s still a bit much for them to do on their own, so you want to either assign them just part of the task or assign them a different chore altogether. All kids develop skills at different rates, and chores are no exception.
I hope that this helps you to make sure your kids are able to complete their chores safely, no matter what age they are.