Yes, We Should be Making Our Kids Do Chores. Here’s How and Why.

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Recently, a friend of mine posted this article about how chores lead to happy children and why parents these days do not require their children to do them. It got me thinking about my own children and how much I require of them here at home {yes, my children do chores}. So, I did what any parent would do… I took the issue to social media and I got some pretty interesting feedback. Here are what some moms had to say.

Why Should Kids Do Chores?

“Our reasoning {for making our kiddos do chores} is that we are all a part of the family and we all pitch in to help the family.”

“I want to raise kids with character. I don’t want them sitting on the couch while I am working for the good of the family.”

“They helped make the mess; they should help clean up the mess.”

There were more responses, but these three seemed to be the overall theme among those who responded. I can totally relate to the third one. I am a huge advocate for my children picking up after themselves, whether at home or somewhere else. 

I didn’t always have my children clean up after themselves. I was content cleaning on my own. Why? Because I can do it better and faster than they can {amen!}, however I had this AH-HA moment one day with my oldest child. One evening I was spent. You know what I mean; that “I am DONE” moment. I instructed my children to pick up the massive piles of toys all over my living room floor. My oldest child shouted out from the couch, No, you do it. You are supposed to do it. I remember my jaw dropping and being so shocked by the words that came out of his mouth.  I realized that I was doing them a disservice by always picking up after them. Trust me, things quickly changed after that.

Chore Charts and Motivations

I took to pinterest and looked up every chore chart imaginable {reward charts, chore charts, chores by age, etc}. I implemented some pretty cool ideas, but each only worked for about two to three weeks, then it was back to screaming and yelling at my kids to do something. Then one day it clicked… I realized that each of my children responded to chores differently and my world {and my attitude} changed for the better.

My oldest son, Gideon, he responds to what any autistic boy responds too… his tablet / screen time. He absolutely HATES it when he cannot play on the tablet or a video game. So, when I REALLY need him to do something, I will respond with a consequence having to do with those two things he loves. He usually responds to my requests pretty quickly. The majority of the time, he just does what he is told, with the occasional sigh and stomping of feet. 

My second child, Annabelle, well she is an artist at heart. I can tell that child that I will print out another coloring page for her or reward her with a new coloring book {or crayons} and she will pick up toys real quick. As for my younger two, they are just angels {literally} and hardly give me any headache about cleaning up and will most likely be singing the clean up song while doing it. 🙂

Are my children always compliant with chores? HECK NO! But do they still do them? YES!

It is hard work to teach children to pitch in for the family; to be responsible for a task; to allow them to fail at it when it isn’t done properly and to do that task again. To me, having my children help around the home minimizes their sense of entitlement. It teaches them shared responsibility and makes them feel part of the family. 

How Do I Start Getting My Kids to Do Chores?

You may be asking yourself, “this all sounds great, but where do I start?” The pinterest links I posted in the paragraphs above are a great starting place for printing out a template and posting it on the fridge for your child to look at every day. Or, you can pick a couple of chores below and start there with your kiddo. Start small and then add on when you feel like your child is ready for more responsibility. 

Do your children do chores? What is your family’s system for dividing responsibilities and making sure they get done?

 


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Angelica, also lovingly referred to as Angel, is a wife to her high school sweetheart, Oscar, and the young couple finally tied the knot in June of 2004. After struggling with infertility for seven years, they welcomed their first child, Gideon {January 2012}, and in three short years they welcomed Annabelle {2013}, Deacon {2014} and Jubilee {2015}. In the summer of 2016, Angel’s oldest child was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), which she continues to educate herself about by reading books, listening to podcasts and attending local classes and training events. When Angel isn’t busy tackling home duties and juggling her children’s activities, she enjoys taking self-defense classes at Krav Maga Houston, which she has been attending since moving to Houston in November 2016. She also loves coffee, reading, and meeting new people. Angel strives to live out 1 John 3:16 daily and loves talking and teaching others about what that means.

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