November 13, 2012

Household chores can pile up throughout the day, particularly if only one person is doing them. By encouraging your children to help out with chores from an early age, you will not only benefit from their help but also teach them the necessary life skills they need to run a household. Chores teach responsibility, respect, and practicality. However, sometimes it can seem like pulling teeth to get any help from your kids around the house. By establishing expectations and a routine, you can get your kids more involved and make life easier for everyone in the long run.

Start at an Early Age

Some easy first chores for children can include making their own bed, tidying up their toys, setting the table, and helping fold laundry. These can be done from a very young age, don't take too much time, and help improve motor skills. Toddlers tend to enjoy helping out around the house. By encouraging your child to help out from a young age, you can start to instil good habits that will hopefully last through the later years.

Some of these tasks can be difficult for small children to do alone, so you can work with them to straighten sheets or fold laundry. When your kid is ready to go to school, you can get him or her involved in school preparations such as organizing school supplies, affixing school name tags to clothing, and preparing a packed lunch. Children in primary grades are just learning to enjoy their new-found independence, so this can be encouraged by letting them take an active role in preparing for school.

 Keep House Clearly Organized

It will be easier for your child to help around the house if he or she knows exactly where items are supposed to go. You can use name labels UK to mark sections of the living room where each child can put their own toys. When a child is setting the table, it's helpful if dishes, place-mats and cutlery are always in the same places. This will help teach order and organizational skills along with independence. Shelves, cubby holes, and drawers can be used in bedrooms to give plenty of room to put items away in their right place, rather than simply throwing them all in a heap in the closet.

Don't Turn Chores into a Punishment

Although as children get older it may be increasingly difficult to turn chores into a fun game, you don't want to give the impression that they are being punished by keeping a tidy house either. Reward children and teens for completing their tasks, rather than punishing them with extra housework. If you punish them with chores, they'll have a negative connotation with helping out and will avoid it at all costs. Show your appreciation when a job is done well, and give them additional privileges if they go above and beyond expectations.

Whether you choose to actively reward your children for their help around the house or simply keep chores as a basic expectation, consistency is important. Let children know what you expect from them and follow through when they don't meet your expectations. By setting standards from a young age, you will help raise more independent and helpful youngsters.

(Thanks for the guest post Alina Anghel)


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