Age appropriate chores at home

Believe it, or not – your child wants to do house work! It may be surprising to you what your child takes joy in doing. Its true though. Children enjoy trying to accomplish the everyday tasks that adults take for granted (and most likely, hate). So why not get your child involved and make life easier?

Most of you may not believe our list of works to be possible, but there are ways to get your child into the habit of helping you at home and taking responsibility.

Here are some pointers that will help:

1)          Don’t force your child to do some work.

Even if you think your child is ready to learn some new work because you have seen him show interest before, don’t force him to participate or learn whenever you ask. Your child is a person and he may be interested in something else at the time. So, try again at another time, or join him in doing what is of interest to him at the moment.

2)          Begin by showing how and then doing things alongside each other. Slowly allow her to do by herself but be there to step in when she needs help.

3)          Try to keep work materials/tools child-sized and accessible. It is no use trying to get your child to sweep when he can’t even hold the broom. And that child-sized broom must also be accessible at all times and not just when you want him to sweep. Brooms, mops, vessels, trays, buckets and anything else you can think of, the same rule applies.

4)          Slow down and take the time to show your child how to do the work. Keep your movements slow and non-dramatic. And use both hands while holding anything. These will make it easier for your child to copy you.

5)          Don’t talk while showing something. A running commentary or instruction wont help very young children because they will be more drawn to watching your face while you talk. Just the action, with an occasional “are you watching?” or “look here please” will be enough.

6)          Try to make work fun. The lesser you crib about having to finish something, the more likely it is that your child will want to do the work.

7)          Focus on one work at a time. You child wont have the capacity to do or even observe you while you multi-task.

8)          This goes without saying, but we will say it anyway – Don’t expect perfection. Your child’s motor skills even after a few times of trying may not be the level of cleanliness you want. The spill may not be completely wiped, but it isn’t due to lack of trying. Only with repetition and watching how you do it perfectly will your child master the ability too.

9)          Expect progress to be step-by-step. Show your child one step at a time and build on it.

10)        And finally, enjoy yourselves. If the activity feels strained or frustrating, allow your child to just watch while you complete the work calmly and if possible, joyfully. Come back to it with your child another day.

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