An article aimed to help parents train their kids with housework
|It’s natural for young children to want to spend time with their parents. But doing household chores often cause mom and dad to take many hours away from their kids. So what is the solution? Use this as an opportunity to get your children to help you out with chores, and discover endless ways to bond with them.
Children must be taught to shoulder their responsibilities at home-making, even at an early age. Get rid of the idea that you’ll give them chores only as a form of punishment. And as long as you make the tasks appropriate for their age and ability, performing household chores will give your children a sense of fulfillment, which will enhance their self-esteem.
One of the key things to keep in mind is that although children would need to exert their best efforts to finish a task, perfection should not be required from them. Avoid slave-driving or ordering your kids around. Instilling discipline, perseverance, and the value of cooperation as a result of asking your children to help with chores should be done with a gradual, gentle approach.
The following is not an exhaustive list, but just some simple, basic tips on what to do:
Provide Child-Appropriate Cleaning Equipment
Who wouldn’t want clean floors and neatly dusted furniture? However, you can’t expect your kids to handle adult-sized equipment. Miniature brooms, mops, pails, dustbins, and even gardening tools can be purchased at hardware stores in major shopping malls. Teach your children how to use each tool properly by demonstrating. As they’re able to catch on, you should be able to supervise them, since safety is also crucial.
Break Down One Big Chore into Smaller Tasks, and then Delegate
A chore that is easy for adults may seem overwhelming for children. If you expect them to fold a mountain of washed laundry, employ the “divide-and-conquer” attitude. Smaller children can fold hankies, while older kids can be assigned towels and shirts.
Children learn through continuous reinforcement, so be patient, even if it may take a while for them to do a task properly. Use a step-by-step approach when explaining what should be done and when. In the case of folding towels, you can instruct them that each fold should be one-fourth of the entire towel.
This is especially helpful during extremely hectic days and your kids don’t feel like helping out. You can work around a regular schedule, but still remain flexible. For example, you can negotiate with your kids to give up T.V. time three evenings a week in order to help you set the table or prepare dinner.
Offer a Helping Hand Whenever Needed
If a task proves to be too difficult, don’t allow your children to take the easy way out and quit. Instead, make things easier for them by offering assistance. This will give them the impression that you’re a team and that they can rely on you.
Avoid Being Overly Meticulous or Critical
It’s vital for children to develop a positive attitude towards chores. If you’re always nagging and criticizing them, the experience of performing tasks will turn out to be a negative one for them.
Should you reward your children for every single chore they’ve done well? Definitely not! They should be able to figure out that as they grow older, they’ll be required to perform certain tasks – whether they get paid for it or not. But always dispense a kind word or praise, such as:
“Your room looks so neat after you put away all your toys. You did a good job.”
“Thank you for helping me wash the dishes. That was very thoughtful of you.”
Children need their parents for guidance when doing household chores. Keep these basic tips in mind, and you’ll be well on your way towards making tasks pleasant for them.