Age-appropriate chores for your kids

Teach your peewee crucial life skills by giving him household tasks that fit his age.

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If your kids seem restless and always bored, perhaps it’s time to inject a little “purpose” and structure to their day. You can let children as young as 2 carry out chores in the home.

Besides easing your workload, kids learn about responsibility when they are given tasks to do. Chores also allow children to see themselves as important members of the household and contributors to the family.

When junior’s able to complete you the task you set for him, he’ll feel more capable that he’s met his obligations. This gives his self-esteem a boost. Completing his chores also equips him with skills to function independently in the world even as he learns to deal with frustration and delayed gratification. You’re also teaching him to use his initiative, say, when he realises there’s a task at home that’s yet to be completed, like putting away the dishes or wiping the counter.

Take the time to teach your child new chores one-on-one – he’ll love the undivided attention. Kids are also motivated by rewards, so a simple sticker chart that allows him to build up to bigger rewards might work. For older kids, tying chores to their allowance is also an option.

Keep in mind that setting tasks for your offspring can sometimes create more work for you in the beginning, but once the gears are in motion, we promise it’ll be worth it! It’s a good idea to set aside a regular time slot for chores. For instance, after dinner, get your toddler to pick up her toys after dinner, while the older one wipes the dinner table, and daddy and mummy wash and dry the dishes. Not sure where to start? Check out our age-appropriate chore chart.

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Read on for additional tips on how to assign chores!

Tips on putting junior to work:

· Don’t use it as punishment The last thing you want to do is turn him off his chores. Chores aren’t something to do as a negative consequence of one’s actions ― they’re a part of life.

· Be enthusiastic Sure, sweeping the floor isn’t that fun, but to a child it may well be! So, be upbeat and excited about the work you set him to do.

· Know your end goal To be honest, your aim isn’t to have a spotless house here. What you gunning for is to encourage and create a positive attitude towards chores. So, even if you have to “make up” a chore, like stacking the magazines upright in a shelf, that’s fine.

· Be his cheerleader Praise him generously. Make a big deal as to what a good job he’s done and watch his face swell with pride!

Illustrations Lim Jae-Lynn

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