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Who Else Wants to Get Their Kids to Help More Around the House?

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It’s day #2 of 5 Days of Homeschool Tips for Tired Moms.  Who Else Wants to Get Their Kids to Help More Around the House?

Who Else Wants to Get Their Kids to Help More Around the House?

Who Else Wants to Get Their Kids to Help More Around the House?

When I was pregnant with baby #5, I reached a point where I didn’t just want my other kids to help more around the house, I needed them to! I simply couldn’t do it all anymore.

Unfortunately, my four other kids were ages 5 and under at that time. So, I got creative and found every kind of job they could do and had them do those.

One job I had my 5-year-old do was fold my husband’s clothes and put them in his drawers. One day I told my husband I was sorry his clothes weren’t folded as nicely as they used to be, and he didn’t even know what I was talking about! Obviously, he wasn’t as picky about that as I was.

I also had my kids unload the dishwasher. It really helps if you can get creative in organizing your kitchen and have the dishes in lower cabinets to make it easier for kids to put them away. But, we also had a nice sturdy step-ladder for dishes that needed to be higher.

Why Have Kids do Chores at Home?

There are numerous reasons why kids should do chores at home. I already mentioned one above. Mom simply can’t do everything! I heard a great phrase years ago that stuck with me:

“Mom does only what the kids can’t do.”

There are plenty of homemaking jobs that the kids simply can’t do. They can’t create the family budget or pay the bills. They can’t go grocery shopping (until they are 16 or older.) They can’t cook many meals (until they’re older). You get the point. Mom has enough to do.

Skills and Responsibility

Kids also need to learn skills and responsibility. Chores are an awesome way to do that.

Just this past weekend I was getting frustrated that my teen daughters hadn’t cleaned the bathrooms yet. They were almost 2 full days late. So, there were consequences. I want my kids to learn that the family is depending on them, just like they depend on me to buy food.

Yes, I can clean the bathrooms better than they can, but another reason for kids to do chores is to learn the skills. We switch chores around every season so that other kids learn how to do those skills as well.

Safety first

So, how do you know what household chores your kids are capable of doing at each age? Well, it’s a little different depending on the child and your own particular home.

Remember, this as you make the decision.

Don’t have your kids do anything that is too dangerous for them. Here are a few examples of a job that might be dangerous for a particular job: cooking, carrying a vacuum cleaner upstairs, putting clothes detergent in the washing machine. Please use your best judgment.

Chore ideas separated by age

Ages 1 and 2

  • Put toys away in a box or basket

Ages 3-5

  • Unload dishwasher
  • Fold small towels
  • Match socks
  • Put clothes from washer to dryer

Ages 6-8

  • Set the table
  • Mop with Swiffer-type mop
  • Wash clothes in the washer
  • Load dishwasher
  • Make sandwiches
  • Dust with a dusting cloth
  • Vacuum with a canister vacuum
  • Wipe kitchen chairs
  • Shoveling snow (with a small shovel)
  • Raking leaves

Ages 9-12

  • Rinse dishes
  • Make dinner
  • Clean bathrooms
  • Vacuum with an upright vacuum
  • Wipe table after meals
  • Put food away after meals
  • Sweep
  • Take out trash
  • Pulling weeds and other gardening
  • Wash pots and pans

Here are some more chores for 10 year old.

Ages 13-15

  • Make more difficult meals
  • Run lawnmower
  • Run snowblower

Ages 16-18

  • Give siblings rides
  • Grocery shopping
  • Run errands

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More Tips on Getting Kids to Help More Around the House

When you switch jobs from one child to another, have the experienced kid train the new kid on how to do that chore.

“Don’t expect, what you don’t inspect.” We used to have inspections where my husband would line the kids up and check off on his clipboard. The kids thought it was great fun to pretend like they were in the army. 🙂

Give rewards to the kids for doing chores. This is related to real life. You can choose to give them an allowance. It’s similar to us getting paid for working when we’re older. The kids can also learn to budget, spend well, and save with this method.

Another idea is just to have the reward be computer time or some other fun thing to do. We get rewards for jobs well done; I love doing that for my kids, too!

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