If they can ride a scooter, eat with a spoon and fork, sing the alphabet and reach the top of a playground climbing frame, then even the littlest children can help around the house. Introduce chores and rewards and get your little ones used to the idea of being helpful around the house. Here are some jobs that young children can help with:-
- Putting shoes away: teach your little ones to pair up shoes and place them nicely by the door, or wherever you store them, when they get a little unsightly.
- Collecting rubbish: if you have waste bins around the house then invite your children to collect them on bin days so that you can empty them into the dustbins.
- Laying the table: give them the right cutlery and see if your children can lay the table for you. They may have seen a table set hundreds of times, but see if they know where the knife, the fork and the spoon should go themselves!
- Putting out washing: it's so easy to discard dirty clothes at the end of the day and leave them all over the bedroom - yes, even you do it, and you'll wonder why the kids do in a couple of years! Have them take their dirty laundry through to the washing basket.
- Straightening the bed: if they aren't in a cot any more then your little ones should be able to straighten their bedclothes in the morning. Encourage them to do so, and to lay their pyjamas under their pillow.
- Turning off the television: if your children watch a little bit of TV, teach them to turn it off when you ask them to. Most children love turning things on and off, and they will love the responsibility of this job. Hopefully it will make it easier for you to extract them from the telly when you need to!
There are so many chores that you can find for your little ones to do. Draw up a reward chart for them, or even start giving them pocket money, just a few pence for each task. The reward is only half the motivator, most children will also be driven by the fact that they are being helpful around the house, and receiving praise for being so.
Toddlers enjoy being helpful and you should nurture their enthusiasm, even if you don't honestly welcome their help! Getting young toddlers helping out with chores will give them a great sense of satisfaction, even if the quality of their work may not quite be up to scratch. Having them help out around the house will grow self-esteem and a sense of responsibility.
Don't worry if they don't complete tasks to the standard, or even in the manner, that you hope for and expect, it's simply good that they are doing what they can. They will also need reminding to do their chores, but after a while they will fall into a routine. Heap on the praise as they complete their tasks.
Here are ten ideas for chores that you can have toddlers do for you:-
- Dusting around the house with a duster, feather duster or even an old sock on their hand
- Picking up their toys and tidying their bedroom
- Helping to clear up fallen leaves in the garden
- Putting dirty clothes in the laundry basket
- Sorting light and dark clothes before they are washed
- Pairing up cleaned socks
- Putting shoes away neatly
- Setting the table
- Feeding your pets
- Putting away clean cutlery from the dishwasher
Why don't you create a sticker chart at ToucanLearn and reward with a sticker every time your little one helps out around the home?