To start, let’s understand the difference between a job and a chore. Yes, there is a difference! As adults, we go to work and that is our job. When we are home, we have chores around the house. The same goes for kids. Giving opportunity to kids at a young age, helps bring in a balance, respect, and responsibility. As they get older, there work ethic will be established. So how does this work?
Here at the Gonzales household, we have a poster of what “jobs’ are available for the kids to earn money. This does not fall under making your bed. Jobs are things such as raking the leaves and moving the grass for the older ones. The younger ones are wiping down light switches and baseboards…young kids are short so it saves us old people from having to hurt our backs!
Having a chore for them, is the things that are expected of them to do. For example, making your bed and brushing your teeth are every day things we do to learn a routine. These are expected to be done. Having your room clean is expected to be done. My children do not get paid for doing those chores. They however, must have them done before they can play or go on their electronic devices.
Here are some age appropriate chores:
- 1 year old, kids can pickup toys to learn to put things away. Praising them now is really important.
- 2-3 years old, they can start learning to make their bed and help mommy or daddy match socks. Again, they are relating to where to put things and how to do things.
- 4-5 years old, they are better at doing things, but still are not skilled so you need to be patient. At this age, my children were making their beds, cleaning their rooms, collecting the trash from around the house, and put it in the kitchen trash bin. They can also help with setting the table and putting the clean silverware away from the dishwasher.
- 6-8 years old, they each have their day to clean the bathroom. They have to empty the dishwasher and help dust the house. My children took their clothes out of the dryer, hanging, folding their clothes, and putting them away. This works well because you and I know that we, as kids, put our clothes in the hamper just to make our room look clean…even if our clothes were clean! By doing this, it will help with the amount of clothes that you see in the hamper. By this time, they are also able to help clear or set the table.
- 9-10 years old, they do most all of the chores above, but I also have a day when they help me cook. This gets them involved to help prepare the dish they are going to make, as well as being good bonding time. Also, vacuuming and sweeping the kitchen floors.
- 11-13 years old, they are doing their own laundry. All of the chores above and they also cook one meal a week. I normally will clean the kitchen if they cook that day.
If you noticed by the end of the day that the required chores are not done and they are asking to go play or watch tv, you simply ask if they finished their chores first. They will move quickly to get the chores done!