Chores form an integral part of our everyday lives – they make us a habitual, responsible person. As a parent, you want your children to live their life on similar principles. The best way to make sure that this happens is by assigning chores to your kids. Of course, it can be a bit demanding, difficult, and even exhausting. However, it is going to help your kids tremendously in the long run.
Benefits of Chores
1. Chores boost their self-esteem
Children who do their chores regularly have greater self-esteem and confidence than the ones who don’t. This is particularly true for younger children since they are far more eager to contribute and help. When children finish their assigned chores, they are left with a sense of fulfillment knowing that they just contributed to something bigger than them.
They feel happy realizing that they do matter and they have helped around the house! They feel needed. They also feel confident about doing a particular task and develop a ‘can do’ attitude instead of a negative outlook. As your kids grow up performing chores, they build their confidence which, in turn, helps them do well in life.
2. Chores teach delayed gratification
When you reward your child for doing their chores at the end of the week rather than at that moment, it is elegantly teaching them about delayed gratification. It makes them realize that they are working for something that they will get later rather than immediately. In other words, they realize that they will benefit from their actions in the long run.
3. Chores instill responsibility
When you ask your little one to do a chore, you are actually holding them accountable for that activity. This will impart a sense of responsibility to your child and make them more mature. Having finished their tasks, they will feel more capable and responsible.
In addition, children with chores also become self-disciplined over time. There may be instances when they do not want to do a particular chore. However, they realize that they are responsible for the task and they do it nonetheless, without waiting for anyone to tell them. In order to become successful in life, self-discipline is quite important. It is a habit that children will build over time by doing chores regularly.
4. Chores form team players
If you have more than one kid, then you can have them work on a chore together. If not, you can have your child work on a task with you. Your children want to be a part of the family and have a strong desire to contribute. From a young age, they begin to interpret the dynamics of working together – be it with their siblings or parents. It teaches them to be flexible, to compromise, and more importantly, to contribute to the community.
5. Chores develop motor skills
Chores are one of the best ways to develop your little ones’ gross and fine motor skills. Small tasks like helping in the garden, moving the clothes around, sweeping, et cetera, provide ample opportunities for your child to use their legs and hands.
Chores for Kids: Things To Consider
By now, you have a decent idea of the kind of age-appropriate chores you can give to your children. You also know a few tricks to get your little ones excited about doing these mundane tasks. Now, we will take a look at some of the things that you may want to keep in mind before you go about assigning these tasks.
1. Keep your expectations low
When it comes to chores for your kids, it is a good idea to keep your expectations low. They are going to make mistakes. That’s perfectly all right; after all, we learn from our mistakes. There will be instances when you will want to do a particular task yourself, simply because you can do in half the time. However, you must be patient and try not to intervene.
Instead, show them the way by doing the chores with them. The idea here is to make them realize that they are needed, that they are contributing to the household. You want your kids to become responsible and confident, and this can only happen if you give them their space to grow. They will eventually get better.
2. Be consistent
Performing chores regularly is a habit that needs to be built from scratch in your kids. As a parent, you must be consistent with the tasks you give your children and make sure that they know that they are expected to finish them in time. The tasks can be incredibly simple in nature – something like making the bed! If you are not consistent, then your kids may start putting the chores off in the hope that you will do it for them.
3. Be specific about the chores
When it comes to assigning chores to your kids, it is essential to be as specific as possible instead of being vague. This is because simple instructions can be interpreted in a number of ways. Instead of asking your children to clean their rooms, you can ask them to make their beds, pick up the toys, or shelve the books.
4. Do not use chores as punishments
Yes, one of the most important aspects of parenting is disciplining your children when they make a mistake. Undoubtedly, punishments are the most effective way to teach your kids that every bad decision they make in life will be followed by negative consequences. Furthermore, it will also make them respect you more. However, this needs to be done carefully and wisely to ensure that your kids are gaining something from it, rather than just growing more distant from you.
Whatever may be the case, you must make sure not to use chores as a way to punish your children, especially if you want them to do them willingly. If you start assigning them a household task everytime they make a mistake, then they may eventually grow to hate that kind of work. This goes against the entire purpose of making them responsible and self-disciplined. Instead of developing a habit, they will try to evade it.
5. Make use of a chores chart
Chores chart is a fun way to keep your kids excited about performing simple household tasks. Simply list out the chores for kids by age on a sheet paper and draw three columns. One will be for the person who is supposed to do the chore, while the other two are for deadlines and completion.
Keep this list at a place where everyone can see it. When your kids look at this list, they will realize that everyone in the family is supposed to contribute and help around the house. This will encourage them to be more responsible and do their chores diligently. However, if you think chore charts don’t work the best for you, here is a great alternative – download an app like S’moresUp that manages it all from your mobile.