Getting My Toddlers On Board for Chores!

| September 5, 2014 | 15 Comments

Chores. They are the tasks that no one looks forward to doing around their home, but they have to get done! Around my home we get my little ones involved in some of the chores we have to accomplish. We let them help us around the house for two reasons:

1. It keeps them from making another mess around the house while we are trying to tidy up; and
2. It makes them feel more like a “big kid” to help out and do “big people jobs.”

We would never have them on their hands and knees, scrubbing floors or doing anything that involves using any household products, but we either get them to give us a hand or they ask us if they can help us do some of the things that we do around our home to keep it clean. Below are some of the chores our younger kids do to help us around our home.

Floor Patrol

Besides helping to clear their dishes after they eat, my kids love clearing the floor of the food that did not make it to their mouths. They like helping us sweep up their messes, and they love using the hand vacuum to pick up crumbs after crumbly snacks. For my daughter, this is the thrill of her day! Once that hand vacuum is in her hands, she is a cleaning champ! No crumbs escape her eagle eye, and our floors are thankful for her diligence.

Vacuum Collage

Dishwasher Duty

I love loading up our dishwasher because, face it, washing dishes by hand sucks. But then you have to take the clean dishes out and putting them away. This is where my little tyke shines! As soon as he hears dishes being put away, he rushes into the kitchen, reaches into the dishwasher and starts handing me dishes to put away. Sometimes he becomes distracted by the trays and likes to watch them roll in and out of the dishwasher, but for the most part, he is an amazing helper to have around to get this job done!

Dishes Collage

Toy Box Fun

Sure, my kids may like helping us clean up at home, but they also like to make a mess. My little guy knows that there is no faster way to make our living room messy than by pumping their toy box in a dramatic flourish so its contents make a spectacular crashing sound and toys go spilling in every direction. When it is time for the toys to be put away, I ask my kids to put them away. To make this chore seem like less of a duty and more of a game, I cheer them on every time they put a toy into the toy box. They like hearing me clapping and congratulating them, and they work harder, scurrying around the room to look for more toys to put into the box. Once they are finished, they receive big hugs and we all cheer for a job well done.

Toys Collage

Lugging Laundry

It is great to have a washer and dryer to clean our clothes. Before moving into this home, we had to lug our laundry to the laundry mat in our neighbourhood, and then bring it all home. Now, the trip is infinitely shorter to get clean clothes, but having to fold it all up and then put it away still has to be done. My kids want to help with the folding, and love putting some of the laundry away. I have them put the tea towels away in the drawer where they are kept in the kitchen, and they put their clothes away in their drawers up in their room.

 Laundry Collage

Garden Gnomming?

Our kids like to help us (by us, I really mean my other half) outside in the backyard as well. They like to help dig holes, rake with their child-sized rakes, and sometimes use the outside broom to keep our patio area (and sometimes our garden) clean. My son really likes hanging out in our garden as though he is a garden gnome protecting the plants from would-be intruders, and he also likes caring for our garden with his dad.

Garden Collage

I love how my young children have taken to helping us with some of the chores around our home. We try to keep what we have them do things that are at their level, and we also try to keep it fun, so they will continue to want to help us as they get older. I think the best part about having our little ones chipping in on the chores is seeing the glee in their faces during and after the task is done. They have these huge grins on their faces and they are so proud of their accomplishment that it makes us smile, too!

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Category: Babies & Toddlers, Family, Home & Garden, Living, Tips

About the Author ()

My name is Lian Wright. Born in Toronto, I came to Ottawa as a student to study Political Science at Carleton University, and came away with an Honours Degree, and decided to stay. I'm a huge sports fan, have a love of reading, and like experiencing new things whenever I can. I am now a mother of three children (11, 1 and 7 months old) and am kept constantly on my toes. My blog, Pieces of Me, is my way of sharing what I have enjoyed and encountered in my life so far as a mother. So far, being a mom has had it's expected ups and downs, but that's what makes being a parent so fulfilling for me. I've loved and learned from what's happened so far, and I can't wait to see what's in store for me next. I hope you enjoy the journey with me!

Comments (15)

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  1. Judy Cowan says:

    Cute pictures! It is great to get the entire family helping out regardless of age and teaching them from an early age is important. Chores can be fun if done right 🙂

  2. Lian says:

    Hi Judy! In our home, we love getting our kids helping out whenever they can! I also put on some music and dance around with them to have some fun, and to make the time go by faster.

  3. Shelley Young says:

    My kids help me daily by cleaning up their messes (which is a miracle in itself)….they know they don`t get special privileges or treats or movies etc if they don`t. Once a week they both assist with preparing the garbage and often one or the other will help feed the cat or with laundry or emptying the dishwasher. The beauty is they they WANT to help which is awesome 😀

  4. Lian says:

    Hi Shelley! I am also glad that my kids love and ask to help out around the house, too. I want for them to know how pick up after themselves, and to become more responsible individuals. Hopefully, this will happen as they are asking to help out with chores and finding the fun in them.

  5. Rejane says:

    Thanks for this article. My son just turned 8 and I need ideas of chores to give him.
    Please share.
    Merci

  6. Lian says:

    Hi Rejane!I had my now almost 13 year old folding her own clothes, sweeping up the floor, keeping her room clean, taking out the garbage/helping with the recycling and cleaning the table and the counters after dinner at about 8 yrs old. It’s really up to you as to what you think they are ready to handle at certain ages, and to make it fun. Please let me know if any of my suggestions were helpful.

  7. Elizabeth Matthiesen says:

    I think it’s always good to have the children help out with household chores. I was astonished, on visiting my daughter recently, to hear my grandson (6 yrs) volunteer to do the washing up. Not only that but then my granddaughter (3 yrs) then also got the inclining to wash up too. Way to go kids!

  8. Lian says:

    Hi Elizabeth! It’s great that your grand kids volunteer to do the dishes so young! My eldest did not start volunteering to do dishes until she was about 8 years-old. I second your sentiments where your grand kids are concerned!

  9. Nicole B says:

    Great ideas! I try to involve the kids as much as possible but they are still very young so sometimes it becomes more work but still I feel if I start them early then maybe it will continue!

  10. kathy downey says:

    I just love the photos,its good to start them young.Thats our job as parents to get them ready for the big world out there

  11. DARLENE W says:

    If the kids think they are having fun while doing a chore, you have succeeded

  12. kathy downey says:

    Everyone loves to do fun things

  13. Veronica S. says:

    You’ve given me some new ideas for encouraging my little boys to help around the house.

  14. kathy downey says:

    As soon as my kids were mobile I started to teach them about picking up simple things like toys

  15. kathy downey says:

    Its funny when they get around 11/12 the chores get to be painful for them.My grandson when asked this morning to fold the towels from the dryer,said my fist day of summer holidays and you want me spend my whole day doing laundry…..lol

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