Let me just dive right in and answer this question… NOW. You should give your kids chores right now. I’m talking to you, 6-month-olds. Ok, maybe that’s a little extreme. But I’m a big believer in getting those little monkeys started as soon as possible. If they know how to walk, they can certainly learn how to clean!
WHY give them chores so young? Here are just a few reasons!
-Giving them their own jobs to do makes them feel like an important part of the family.
-It teaches them responsibility, and allows them the opportunity to follow directions.
-It gives them valuable skills that they will use for the rest of their lives.
-Many jobs will help improve hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills.
-The younger kids are, the more enthusiasm they have and the more willing they are to help. So it’s much easier to make cleaning a habit when they are little!
There are many things to keep in mind when giving your kids chores. It’s important to pick the right activity for their age. As much as I’d love Sophie to scrub my toilets, she’s just not ready (darn). I give her tasks that are simple and easily completed on her own.
Her main chore is “wiping.” Yep. That’s seriously her chore. She just takes a damp rag and cleans things. She’s supposed to wipe down the T.V. and a few other surfaces, but she usually does much more than that. She loves helping out and feels very accomplished when she finishes a job.
Does the T.V. really need wiping? Not really. In fact, she usually just covers the screen in streaks. But she’s learning, and will improve over time. As long as she puts in some effort, I praise her as much as possible, and let her know that what she did makes a big difference!
We recently started experimenting with washing dishes. It amazes me to see how much she loves it! She feels so big, and let’s be honest… bubbles are straight up fun.
Because she’s only 3, her “washing” is really just rinsing the dishes before they go in the dishwasher. But she takes it very seriously 🙂
Even Owen, who is 16 months, is learning how to help. When we dump out a container of army men or other small toys, he is in charge of putting them all back. It’s an easy task that he loves doing!
If your kiddos don’t have assigned chores, you should definitely try it out. Or send them over to my house and I’ll put them to work for ya! 🙂
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