Pick Safe Household Chores for your Kids

Edited by Jeffrey Casel, Eng, Anonymous, Nerissa Avisado and 1 other

The way kids these days spend so much time in the internet or playing games is a matter of concern for parents and guardians. At a young age, there are more important things for young children to learn and do instead of spending time in front of the computer or television. This is not saying they should not be allowed to enjoy these childhood perks, but they need to know there are certain things expected of them, regardless of their age.

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As parents, you have a great task ahead in instilling the value of responsibility and work ethics in your children. Studies show that kids, including toddlers, who have been exposed to household responsibilities mature into adults with greater self-esteem and balanced personalities. If you pick safe household chores for your kids, you're not just making them share with the housework, but more importantly, you're helping them gain important skills for their success in adulthood.

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The question often asked is what kind of chores can be assigned for a child of certain age. There is no definite answer to that because children are unique in their own ways, and some may be more mature physically and mentally than other kids belonging to the same age group. For the most part, however, there are things to be expected within an age range. For example, your 7 year old son can be told to accomplish something which his 3 year old sister cannot even understand. The key is in identifying their individual abilities when you assign them appropriate chores, and having the patience to teach them well. Even adults start by learning the ropes, so you can't expect them to ace the job the first time you ask them.

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The Value of Giving Small Tasks to Young Children

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  1. 1
    Builds self-esteem:
    Being entrusted with a chore, no matter how small, provides a young child with self-esteem. It gives the child a major sense of accomplishment knowing he's able to do things with his own little hands and he will take pride in showing he's a reliable and competent worker.
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  2. 2
    Teaches the importance of completing a job:
    A child who knows he's expected to deliver a finished job will do his best to rise to the occasion despite difficulties. This is an important work ethic that will train him to complete whatever tasks are assigned to him, whether at home, school or work.
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  3. 3
    Emphasizes the need to organize and clean things:
    The child will appreciate being in an environment that he helps maintain to be cleaned and organized, especially if he finds it easy to locate things he needs.
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  4. 4
    Develops the habit of being useful around the house:
    Finding he is appreciated for the little tasks he does will make the kid continuously make himself useful even without being asked. It'll be formed in his mind that he has something to contribute in the household chores, and this can very well continue into adult years and beyond.
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  5. 5
    Provides a sense of belonging:
    By explaining to the child that he's part of a family that helps each other in the house, he will easily understand and feel that he has a responsibility to share in his own little way. In fact, he can see his work as a big contribution without thinking he is being singled out, since all members are working together.
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Ways to Get Kids Do Household Chores

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  1. 1
    Start them young.
    The earlier you start giving them tasks, the better. However, as mentioned, you can't expect very young children to be masterful in their jobs because their motor skills are still developing. The objective is not about making them help, but to teach them the value of responsibility and make them feel they are part of the family team.
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  2. 2
    Assign simple tasks.
    Give them age appropriate tasks that they can easily accomplish. Start by demonstrating the steps while giving them clear instructions. Allow them to repeat the process until they can do it satisfactorily.
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  3. 3
    Have a relaxed approach.
    Don't expect the child to be perfect in doing the chores. If you insist on perfection, you may end up doing the chore yourself, which will render the whole exercise useless.
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  4. 4
    Create a chore list and schedule.
    This will allow the kids to clearly see what their tasks are and help them to realize everyone has his own particular chore as well. The calendar will remind them of things they need to accomplish.
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  5. 5
    Employ safety measures.
    Pick tasks that will not expose kids to dangers. Make sure to child-proof the environment when you ask them to do things in the house.
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  6. 6
    Set clear and specific instructions.
    You need to clearly spell out what you ask the kid to do. Don't give general instructions like telling the kid to clean up the room. Instead tell the young fellow to fix his bed, or put his toys in the bin.
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  7. 7
    Ask older kids to help.
    If there are older siblings, you may ask them to become role models. They can also be partnered with younger children in doing tasks, assigning the older ones to give instructions and see to it that they both finish the chore assigned to them.
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  8. 8
    Give no rewards.
    Make the kids understand that they're not getting paid for doing household chores. What they do is for the benefit of the family wherein they belong. A reward gives them an option to refuse in exchange for it. But, you can be generous in giving praises and offering some treats with the whole family in tow.
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Safe Household Chores to Assign your Kids

  1. 1
    Fold the laundry.
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    Folding is a very easy task which kids can do with minimal supervision. Just teach them how to fold and monitor them if they are doing it right, correcting their folds if it's a little bit sluggish.
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  2. 2
    Sort out the groceries.
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    You can teach them how to sort your groceries by creating categories, such as toiletries, meat, vegetables, etc. However, you may have to do the sorting when it comes to hazardous chemicals and fragile items like bottled products and eggs.
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  3. 3
    Wipe the tables and other surfaces.
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    A task that can be easily accomplished by kids, wiping may also include, apart from tables and counters, accessible surfaces doorknobs, window sills, and others. Give your kid non-toxic cleaning spray and clean cloth to wipe the surface.
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  4. 4
    Help in dusting.
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    Dusting is a very time-consuming chore, but fairly easy, so the kids may be asked to help you. They may wear a mask to prevent dust in going through the nose and to prevent allergic reactions. Be sure to supervise in disposing the dusts in proper container.
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  5. 5
    Sort and wash the dishes.
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    Washing the dishes may not yet be an appropriate task for young kids, but they can be asked to sort and put them away. Start by giving them plastic dishes, then gradually let them sort breakables until they learn to be careful in handling them. Older kids can be assigned to wash the dishes after meals.
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  6. 6
    Care for the pet.
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    The little ones can be asked to fill the pet's bowl with food or water. Make sure, though, that the pet is domesticated enough to allow your kid near it. Walking the dog on leash outside can be assigned to older and stronger kids.
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  7. 7
    Tend the yard.
    Task young kids to pick up small twigs and pieces of leaves in the yard.
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    You may also assign them to water the plants and weed the garden. They may even find it amusing if you provide them nice tools and gear.
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Tips, Tricks and Warnings

  • Be consistent in giving chores and instructions. This will keep you from confusing the child in performing the assigned task.
  • Be firm in implementing your rules when it comes to completing their tasks. Make sure the children understand the need to finish their regular chores before they can engage in fun activities, like playing computer games or watching television.
  • Don't use chores as a leverage or form of punishment for misbehavior. This will make the child take chores negatively.
  • If you have problems with any of these steps, ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.

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Article Info

Categories : Parenting

Recent edits by: Nerissa Avisado, Anonymous, Eng

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