Ever noticed how excited little children feel when they are fondly asked to help or given a little task to perform? Unlike most grown-ups, children don’t even think that chores are boring; in fact, most of them are always ready and happy to help with whatever they are asked to do. It makes them feel they are as big and important as grown-ups who they look up to and wish to emulate. Didn’t we love being entrusted with very important work and running errands like our parents, and being appreciated for the same? Our kids feel no different; they love it when their parents appreciate them personally as well as in front of people for being helpful. Chores are not an undesirable burden that kids should be kept away from; if introduced in the correct way and at the right time, they seem unproblematic and even fun for them initially, which lays the foundation for them turning into thoughtful individuals as well as good members of the society.
Why it’s Important to Delegate Chores to your Kids
Getting children to help you by giving them little chores they can carry out comfortably as per their age is highly recommended; you don’t have to feel bad or guilty about getting them to work at a young age. It’s natural for parents to feel a tad uncomfortable about getting work done from their children. If you sense pangs of guilt while delegating simple chores to the apple of your eye, you need to consider these facts:
- Research points to the fact that children who do simple, age-appropriate chores from an early age turn into responsible, hardworking and independent individuals in future.
- They get an early glimpse into what taking responsibilities and honouring commitment is all about.
- It instils discipline, efficiency and consideration for others besides bringing them closer to their parents.
- Children learn to value their parents more and empathise with them and others as they experience for themselves the efforts parents put in.
- Children also tend to see chores as fun and a great way to show they are capable of handling responsibilities and are mature just like them.
- They learn to pull up their sleeves and get to work whenever something needs to be done, even at their workplace later in life.
- Doing chores is a life skill .
So if you have a tiny tot at home whom you want to give the best and also raise splendidly, start allotting small, manageable chores to her or him right away.
Here is a list of age appropriate household chores that can be given to kids as per their age bracket:
Chores for Two to Three Years Old kids
Children as young as two to three years of age are certainly capable of carrying out little chores. Rest assured, they will not only do that properly but also willingly, especially if appreciated for being ‘helpful’ and ‘big’. Children who are just two to three years of age should be encouraged to do the following (with supervision of course):
- Pick up their little belongings like toys and keep them in their place
- Help with making bed
- Help a little to clear away dirty laundry and spills
- Get dressed and undressed
- Keep things like shoes and bags in place
- Help set table for meals
- Dust and wipe surfaces a bit
Chores for Four to Five Year Old kids
Kids at this stage can be asked to continue with all the chores they’ve been carrying out. You can also get them to learn some more skills like sweeping and mopping by giving them miniature cleaning tools with which they can learn, have a little fun and also clean. The following chore can now be added to their routine:
- Fold napkins and towels
- Arrange and keep books and other belongings properly in place
- Help with cooking (cold cooking or with your help)
- Provide support in cleaning bedroom
- Help buy groceries and watering plants
Chores for Six to Seven Years Old kids
By now, your little one (who’d rather call herself or himself a grown-up) will be quite proficient with tasks given so far. You can now add the following tasks to their kitty, which, you can be sure, won’t be difficult for them:
- Help more with cooking and setting table for meals
- Look after pets and their needs
- Keep more things in place
- Brush, comb and decide what to wear
- Answer phone calls, learn to take messages, phone numbers and convey them promptly
- Clean with wet mopping and help with cleaning bathroom
Chores for Eight to Ten Years Old kids
Your child is now quite big, so you can entrust more responsibilities to her or him such as:
- Vacuuming, mopping, cleaning and taking out trash (supervision necessary for appliances)
- Fetch things from local store
- Help with washing dishes and putting away groceries
- Help prepare grocery lists
- Cook simple meals (with supervision)
- Look after pets
- Take care of their personal needs like hygiene ,fully
Ten Years and above
At this stage, your child should be proactive and ready to take initiatives with chores, studies and other activities. Not much of supervision would be needed now, so after all these years of raising your child, you can finally take it a bit easy. Your child can now also perform the following tasks:
- Babysit younger sibling/s
- Clean the yard/ mow lawn
- Clean the car
- Cook simple meals (with lesser supervision)
- Clean bathroom and toilet
Whatever you feel your child can do; you know your child best and can take individual decisions regarding the same.
These chores will definitely not feel burdensome to your child and in fact, will play a vital role in making them responsible, efficient and mature.