It’s time to get Junior to do his part around the home. Here’s how.
WORDS CINDY LIM
It’s never too young to start. Here are some ways to help your child get started on household chores:
Children as young as eighteen months old can be given simple household chores, such as putting away their toys after playing, fetching their own diapers for a nappy change, cleaning up after a meal by throwing away the used napkins. They might make a mess or be unable to finish the chore but patience is key. The aim here is to establish a routine and introduce the concept of responsibility.
Choose Age-appropriate Chores
Pre-schoolers aged between three to six can take on more complex chores that require more time and effort.
Some suitable tasks include packing their own school bag, setting the dinner table,
clearing their own utensils and cutlery after a meal, sorting and folding the laundry,
washing the dishes, making their own bed and keeping their room neat and tidy.
Create a Fixed Schedule
Establish a routine to help reinforce the importance of completing tasks. Create calendars and chore charts to help your child keep track of what tasks must be done and which are completed. Also, schedule chores at realistic timings – asking your child to tend to the garden right after they are back from school or fold the laundry when they are tired may not be the best times for chores.
Let Your Child Have Options
Involve Junior in the decision-making process. List out the tasks to be completed and let your child choose which chores they would be interested in doing and completing. Of course, there will be tasks that they might shy away from, but they should be encouraged to take on those duties.
Keeping it Fun
Family chores can be fun for children. Parents can sing cleaning up songs together with them or turn cleaning up into a game such as sorting toys by colour, matching socks while doing laundry or a competition between siblings on who has the cleanest room or is the fastest cleaner.
Parents can do the chores together as it is a good bonding opportunity. The little ones enjoy working alongside their parents and this is enough to make the chore itself fun!