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How To Teach Your Children To Be Household Helpers

on June 4, 2024

(NewsUSA) - Children can begin learning and participating in household duties as young as two. While handling the tasks yourself may be easier and less time-consuming, involving your children in the home can bring a sense of joy and togetherness, helping them gain confidence, a sense of accountability, and a deeper connection to their family members. 

If you’re thinking, “But where do I start?” the key is in the approach and consistency. You must be as committed to your child’s role as they are. Here are a few tips to help create helpers in the home.

  1. Keep it age appropriate. As a good rule of thumb, your child should be assigned one role or responsibility for each year of age. If they’re three years old, give them three tasks. Make sure the tasks fit their developmental level. If you make them too difficult, they could get frustrated along the way.
  2. It’s all about learning and growth. If you keep this top of mind, you’re bound to be successful. Take the time to explain and demonstrate each task, then do the task with the child the first few times. After that, let them try it on their own. It won’t be perfect, but each attempt is a step towards independence. Set expectations with your child and be clear in your ask. Take each task one at a time to avoid overwhelming your child.
  3. Your encouragement is crucial. If you tried to do something new and failed repeatedly, you, too, would begin to feel discouraged. Remember, your child may feel the same when taking on new roles and responsibilities. Your positive feedback and support can make a world of difference. Tell them what you liked and what they did well. Encourage your child along the way and keep it fun—turn up the tunes, start dancing, and get to work. As they gain more independence with the task, make sure to tell them how and why they’re doing a great job.
  4. Don’t forget the transitions. Use “first-then” sentences to break a multi-step activity into two components. “First, we’re going to put away our race cars, and then we’ll start cooking dinner.” Timers are great visual and auditory cues to help your child know when it’s time to stop what they’re doing and move on to another task. The timers should be fun, interactive, and visible for your child. The timer should be implemented when you’re ready to follow through and should be used consistently. While using them, be sure to give verbal time updates and warnings, as time lengths will vary per child and task. This tool removes the person-to-person dynamic and helps your child understand the concept of transitions.

Each of these tips is also a best-practice teacher tool, so check in with your child’s teacher to see how they may introduce roles, responsibilities, and transitions with your child that you can carry over at home. For more information and resources, visit KinderCare.com.

 

 

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