Did you grow up doing chores? I know I sure did. I grew up on a small farm in Pennsylvania, and we did all kinds of inside and outside chores. I didn’t particularly enjoy many of them, but I’m so grateful now that I learned a strong work ethic, life skills, and how to contribute to the family. That’s why today I want to share why kids should do chores.
You may wonder, should kids do chores? How do you teach kids to do chores? What are some benefits of doing chores? Let’s discuss these and more.
- Should Kids do Chores?
- Benefits of doing chores
- How do You Teach Kids to do Chores?
- Chore List Ideas
Should Kids do Chores?
Should kids do chores? The short answer is yes, kids should definitely do chores. As you’ll see, there are many benefits, both short-term and long, of children doing chores throughout their lives. You’ll see that children who do chores grow in many different areas that are helpful for them now and as an adult.
Benefits of doing chores
There are many reasons why you should do chores and children are no different. Actually, it’s better for them to start out young. When they are young, they are often eager to be helpful, so let me tell you the many benefits of kids doing chores.
Gives a sense of well-being
They have learned to do a task and complete it . . . without help. As your children learn to do different tasks, they are proud of what they can do. They feel like they are actually contributing to the family.
Helps children feel that they’re a part of the family
By doing chores, your children learn teamwork, which will definitely help them later in life. A sense of belonging is also important for building family relationships.
How do chores teach children responsibility? Chores show children that everything in life won’t be handed to them. They will learn to manage their time and do things on their own.
Your children will feel capable and confident
Your children will learn they can do more things. As they learn what they are capable of, they are more willing to learn new tasks.
Learn to manage their time
They will learn that working quickly and efficiently will give them more time to do other things they want to do. On the other hand, if they complain or diddle, they will waste a lot of their time.
Children who do chores from a young age are more successful with completing education, career development, and personal relationships.
Teaches children discipline
So, how do chores teach discipline? They learn that work comes before play. They learn to hold off on what they want to do in order to first do what they have to do.
As your children learn to do more things on their own, they become more independent. Teaching your children a variety of chores is necessary as we train them to become adults.
Learn essential life skills
As mentioned above, your child will eventually move out and need to know how to care for him or herself, home, and possibly family. Chores will teach them many of the life skills they’ll need.
You have less work to do
Remember, you’re trying to work yourself out of a job. Well, in some ways. You’ll always be mom!
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How do You Teach Kids to do Chores?
As with many things, in order to teach your child to do chores, you will want to talk to them about what you’re doing. You want to model the right way to do the task. Let them watch you as you talk your way through it. Let them know your expectations.
After you’ve shown them a time or two, let them try while you’re right there. Talk them through each step. Now some chores are certainly more simple than others so they may not need much guidance. Other chores, such as cleaning the bathroom, doing laundry, or washing dishes, can be a bit more complicated. You may need to continue to offer guidance and talk them through it quite a few times.
Once they have the hang of it, let them do it on their own. Let chores become a part of their daily routine. Perhaps you will want to have them get you when they’re finished to make sure they’ve done it all correctly. Even if you think they have it, you may need to continue to remind them of an area they forgot or didn’t do well for a bit. After that, expect them to do the job correctly.
Another helpful tip is to have posted instructions on each step that needs to be completed. For example, what are the separate steps for cleaning the bathroom? You could also have a picture of what it looks like when done right, such as a picture of the clean bedroom.
What is a good age to start chores?
Even when your child is a toddler, you can begin to show him how to help pick up toys. Young children around the age of two or three are eager to please and help. Let them “fold” clothes or throw something in the trash for you. As they grow, you can have them help set the table or put certain dishes away from the dishwasher.
If your child wants to help you, do your best to find something they can do to help. Eventually, it will become more of a chore (pun definitely intended!). As they grow, they will learn more and more skills, which will help both you and your child. This is a great benefit of doing chores!
What does the Bible say about the role of a mother? To learn more about being a godly mother, check out these 10 characteristics of a good mother according to the Bible.
Kids chores chart
There are many ideas out there for kids’ chore charts. You may want to have one per child or one that works with multiple children. Having a chore chart and some kind of reward system is a great motivator for helping keep your children on track as well as helping them remember what they need to do. It will also help you see what hasn’t been finished.
Etsy has some great ones with pictures for your youngest children, but they also have personalized chore charts for all ages. Personally, I just use a giant whiteboard. I have each child’s name across the top and then a list of their chores for the day. Some stay the same, such as brushing their teeth and making their bed, but others change depending on the day of the week.
You may choose to use a chore jar instead of, or even along with a chore chart. Write down some chores on pieces of paper or on popsicle sticks and put them in a jar or large can. Preferably you will want to make it so you can’t read the chores through the jar. After personal chores are finished, each child would pick one or two chores from the jar to complete that day.
Alternatively, you could use the chore jar for extra chores. These could be paid chores or chores assigned when someone is bored or needs a consequence. Ideally, after the chore is complete, you will keep that one out until all the chores in the jar are finished. You don’t want to be having them do the same couple of chores over and over!
Pinterest has many great ideas for cute chore jars you can make.
Chore List Ideas
What chores are appropriate for kids? Are your children already doing chores, or are you at a loss as to what they could do? There are many chores your children can do, especially as they get older. We tend to underestimate their abilities, or we just get stuck in a rut of doing everything ourselves. Download your FREE kids’ chores by age printable.
Chores for pre-school age
As previously mentioned, even our young children can help with some things. They love to feel needed and helpful. In time, they will help more and more.
- Pick up toys
- Throw trash away
- Help wash fruit and veggies
- Help feed pets
- Wipe up spills
- Put dirty clothes in the laundry basket
- Make bed
- Empty small trash cans into a large one
- Put away books
- Get a diaper for the baby
Chores for kids
I would say this list covers chores for kids ages 6-12, although some things the youngest ones won’t be able to do until they’re on the older end of this range. Each child is different as well in what they can handle. Be patient and let them help with the work of being part of a family. As moms, we certainly don’t need to do everything.
- Empty dishwasher
- Wash dishes
- Set the table
- Dust the furniture
- Wipe down baseboards, doorknobs, light switches, cabinets, appliances, etc.
- Wipe down the bathroom counter and sinks
- Fold laundry
- Sweep the floor
- Empty trash can
- Water plants
- Clean mirrors
- Clean remotes
- Wipe down dining room chairs
- Carry in and put away groceries
- Get the mail
- Rake leaves
- Do the laundry
- Help with meal prep
- Vacuum floors
- Get their own snacks and small meals
- Clean out the car
Chores for teens
Teens, especially older ones, can and should do all the tasks an adult can do. They need to learn the skills needed for life. Let them cook, clean, babysit, and help with house and yard maintenance. Prepare them to be able to care well for themselves and someday a family.
- Cook a meal
- Clean the bathroom
- Mop the floor
- Mow the lawn
- Wash the car
- Babysit siblings
- Help with home projects and maintenance
Now that you’ve read through this, I’d love to know what you use to motivate your children to do chores. Be sure to comment below. We’re in this together and we can learn from each other.
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