Chores! Getting Kids to Help

Chores! Getting Kids to Help

Getting kids started with chores.

Fall is here and winter is coming which means the whole family is going to be spending way more time inside than out.  That means more chores to deal with.  Usually this falls on mom to pick up the extra work but this year, I think you should consider something different.

Why not get the kids involved in helping with chores?

There are several different chores that children can help with depending on their ages.  You can teach them to help around the house when they are small and it will become ingrained in them.  Your children’s future spouses will love you for that!

To get you started I wanted to provide you with some thoughts and ideas about how to implement a chore system.

First off determine what needs done.

Start off with the most important thing on your list.  If it is to keep the living room picked up and the kitchen clean then start there.  Younger kids can help with picking up toys and straightening pillows on the couch.  They can pick up shoes and place them by the front door.  Your older child can vacuum and dust.

In the kitchen they can help with putting away dishes, wiping down counters and sweeping the floor.  Have them take turns feeding the dog.  If you have older kids have them start helping with rinsing their dishes and putting them in the dishwasher.  For teenagers take advantage of their skills and put them to work fixing one meal a week.  Can you imagine having a night off from cooking every week?

Your children won’t always do things the way you want them done.  Crumbs might be forgotten on the floor or you will see streaks on the windows and dust bunnies they missed. But let them try.  Each time they will get better.  Gently instruct them how to correct their work.  Don’t let them see you redo their hard work.  They will feel crushed.  Believe me, I made this mistake.  If you absolutely must fix whatever they didn’t do right, make sure they are out of sight first.

Chore charts are amazing helpers.

Yes, chore charts sound lame but seriously it does help.  Lay out some basic every day chores for your children to complete and each time they do let them put a sticker or a magnet on the chart.  It teaches them responsibility and pride in their hard work.  After they reach their goal treat them to a small toy or an ice cream cone.  Preteens will laugh at you when you try to do a chore chart but even they will get enticed by the thought of a reward.  Maybe it is going to a matinée with their friends or having a sleepover.

The whole point is for mom to have some help around the house.  You aren’t the only one that makes the messes, so you need help to clean them up.  I have started chore charts several times over the years and I have noticed as my boys age things change.  Be flexible and adjust the chores and incentives as they grow older.

Also, I have included a sample chore chart that could start you off.  It is simple and easy. Just click print and fill it out.  Post it to your fridge.  You will be relieved at how much your kids can help you!

Chore Chart

chore chart

clip art courtesy of

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I would love to hear your comments and questions!

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