Kids' Chores, What Do Kids Learn By Helping Out
By: Lori Thayer
Chores for kids, should they be helping out? If you ask them they would definitely say no. But, kids learn important lessons by having regular responsibilities around the house.
Think back to when you were a kid. What were your responsibilities at home? Maybe your chores included setting the table, clearing the dishwasher and keeping your room picked up. These are the same type of household chores you need to do as an adult. What did you learn by doing those tasks?
Lessons learned by giving kids chores:
- Everyone in a household must pitch in to keep things running smoothly. If only one person is picking up, preparing the food and cleaning it is almost impossible to keep the house clean. When everyone helps out the house stays clean easily.
- Helping out is a positive thing (give them praise and thanks for their work). When kids get positive feedback for helping they feel good. We all enjoy praise and are more willing to repeat the behavior that earned the praise.
- People appreciate it when you help out. As kids learn to help out at home they will take that attitude with them to school and friends' houses. Teachers, friends and other parents will be very appreciative giving our kids even more positive reinforcement.
- A sense of accomplishment when completing a job. Cleaning is one of those tasks where it is easy to see the difference your work made. Kids, just like us, feel a sense of accomplishment at seeing the immediate impact their work had.
- How to take care of a household for when they are older. One day your child will be off at college or in an apartment of their own and will need to know how to care for their living space. Teach them how to do their own laundry so they don't show up on your doorstep with an overflowing hamper.
- Time management – When kids have tasks that they need to complete along with their homework and before bed and play time they will learn to manage their time. If they don't get their tasks done they aren't able to have time to play.
- Self-discipline – In the process of learning time management your kids are also learning self-discipline. In order to get what they want, i.e. play time, they need to complete their chores. Holding in their impulses and being responsible in order to have fun later is self-discipline.
- Independence – Knowing how to take care of the household and clean up after themselves brings a feeling of independence. How do you feel when you don't know what to do to care for you sick pet? Helpless, I imagine. Teaching your child what to do when their pet is sick and clean up after them helps to bring them independence. Kids gain confidence in their abilities as they learn what to do.
- Basic life skills - Knowing how to do their laundry, clean the toilet and prepare basic foods are basic life skills that everyone in our society should know how to do.
What type of chores did you do as a child and what did they teach you? Share your comments below or on Facebook.
Lori Thayer is passionate about finding ways to simplify and enrich life. She also shares tips on connecting more meaningfully with others. She is excited to share these tips with you. Check out her eBook, The Clean Routine. A system to bring order and calm to your home.