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Posted in Family and Friends | July 2014

A few extra pairs of hands

kids and chores
Being run off your feet around the home while your pre-teen sits in front of the TV is something all parents go through – and it can be extremely frustrating to say the least. Getting your kids to scrape themselves off the sofa is no easy feat, but household chores can be a great way to get them up and doing something worthwhile.

The idea of doing household jobs might not seem overly appealing to youngsters, but you’d be surprised to see just how much children enjoy being given a bit of responsibility. Sure, they might make a face at first, but you’ll soon have them lending a helping hand – as long as you go about it the right way.

Children enjoy responsibility

Your child might sulk when asked to do something, but deep down kids tend to enjoy being given responsibility. It’s great for a youngster to know they are doing something important to help with the upkeep of the home and to take some of the weight off their parents’ shoulders.

While younger children shouldn’t be expected to carry out jobs and teenagers should be taking on more important responsibilities, youngsters aged 9-13 can be given tasks befitting their years.

Giving a child a job to do will not only help you out, but also give the little ones the chance to show they’re growing up and are capable of doing things to please Mom and Dad.

Different jobs for youngsters

While it may be too much to expect your ten-year-old to perform some of the more important jobs – cooking, cleaning, washing and ironing, for example – there are numerous tasks you can give children with the expectation of them doing it well.

A common job for youngsters is to make their bed in the morning. This is a great way to get them into a positive routine they can take forward for the rest of their lives. It not only teaches them the importance of being neat and tidy, but also reinforces the message that it’s vital you look after your belongings.

On a similar theme, getting your children to clean their bedroom means they’ll develop a better understanding of why it’s important to be organized and how much nicer it is not to live in a messy setting.

Preparing the mealtime beverages, from simply filling up a pitcher of water to making homemade lemonade, is a simple job that gives your child a degree of responsibility. This can be a good way to involve your son or daughter in the process of preparing a family meal without leaving them in charge of more important cooking duties. While you make the food, your little ones can take pride in knowing they’re preparing the drinks – a simpler, yet necessary task.

Taking out the garbage or sorting the recycling is a job very few of us enjoy, yet it is essential to the upkeep of the home. Why not give this duty to your little one? It might not be the most fun thing to do, but will teach children that some jobs – although not overly enjoyable – need to be carried out.

You could also use this as an opportunity to educate your child about recycling and why it’s so important that we all do our bit for the environment.

The pride your children will start to feel as they embrace the newfound responsibility you’ve entrusted to them is positive reinforcement that will serve them well as they grow, mature and take on bigger challenges as young adults.

For more information on getting kids more involved around the house, including sample lists of age-appropriate chores for children, visit WebMD and Focus on the Family.

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