Household chores are, unfortunately, inevitable, but they can be made more fun by involving the kids. But, if you think that your kid(s) will not want to have anything to do with the mopping, cleaning and folding of clothes, here are some tips to motivate them to share the load.
Getting Kids Involved in Household Chores
Household chores are definitely not the most interesting activities to do as a family, but parenting experts say that having your children be a part of them will teach them to be responsible. The experts also opine that we all have a yearning to be needed and to feel that we have made a meaningful contribution, be it at work, school or home. Assigning specific chores to your kids will satiate their role as a contributor, too.
Here’s the plan of action to tackle household chores as a family:
Chart out the chores:
Start by making a list of chores that need to be done and have your kid(s) pick out favorite tasks. Remember to check the age-appropriateness of the chosen chores. With this information, create one or two charts listing daily and weekly chores, the schedule and the individual responsible for it. Don’t forget to place in an area that is accessible to everyone. You can always switch up the assignments to make the chore calendar more challenging and exciting.
Write clear instructions:
Be precise in your instructions, especially for younger children — say “pick up the toys and put them in their respective bins” instead of “clear the play area.”
Help them learn the chore:
Work as a team and patiently teach children how things need to be done. It might help to first do the task yourself, let them do it while you supervise and finally allow them to do it alone. Seeing you do the work will motivate the kids to learn quickly and perform well.
Don’t be strict on deadlines:
Focus on having the chore done well and not quickly or sloppily. Not focusing on a deadline will take the pressure off your child, giving him or her more room to perform well. It might help to give them a little slack on the perfection too, allowing them time to ease into their new routine.
Have a reward system:
Monetary benefits for each completed chore is still a debated subject and experts believe that children should not be taught that chores are done for money. Small kids could be rewarded with simple things like a sticker against their chore on the chart or a few extra minutes of play time in the evening. Allowances might, however, work for older kids who understand the value of money and may have more needs for pocket money.
Allot Age-Appropriate Chores
Don’t underestimate your child’s abilities, because today’s toddlers can operate iPads and smartphones better than us. However, when introducing them to household chores, make sure you provide age-appropriate tasks like the following:
- Stacking books that are strewn
- Putting clothes into the laundry basket
- Wiping up things they spill
- Picking up the newspaper
- Watering plants
- Clearing the table
- Helping in the kitchen
- Packing lunch bags
- Cleaning their bedrooms
- Walking a pet
- Sorting laundry and putting away own clothes
- Making their own breakfast/snack
Ages 10 and up:
- Babysitting siblings
- Cleaning the kitchen
- Helping with washing the car
With a list of age-appropriate chores and an organized chore chart, you are all set to go forth and conquer all your household chores as a family.
Stuart, A. (n.d.). Divide and Conquer Household Chores. Retrieved from https://www.webmd.com/parenting/features/chores-for-children#1
Carter, C., & Vercelletto, C. (n.d.). 5 Ways to Motivate Kids to Do Chores. Retrieved from https://www.parents.com/kids/development/social/motivate-kids-to-do-chores/