(photo courtesy of No Revisions at Unsplash.com)


Some parents believe getting a kid to do something around the house is like, well, pulling teeth (not that THAT is easy to do either, as someone who’s been to the dentist more than once can attest). So many parents today are like chickens running with their heads cut off, taking their child from ballet, to soccer, to piano, one activity after another  really tiring said parents out, so there is no energy put into getting the child to do chores.

Yes, I said it. Kids should do chores at their  home.

Many today believe kids today have too much handed to them because it is just easier for their parents to do housework without them. But what are your children learning when you do that? Why should “they” be the king or queen of Sheba, so to speak?

No, some believe it is “good” for children to do chores, even as early as age three, such as putting napkins on the table at supper time. One day these children will be young adults and need to know how to set a table, make a meal, do laundry, balance a check book, clean the toilet. Why not start this training at home?

A 75 year Harvard study on child psycho-social behavior said that kids who do household chores fared “better” in later life. Doing the dishes, helping to set the table, teaching them how to heat up a can of soup, can give a child a feeling of competency and accomplishment, according to the study.

It is suggested you have a chart you can put stickers on for the young ones. Do so many chores, get so many stickers, and you earn a privilege or maybe a special outing or toy. I “drew” stickers on a piece of paper for my sons and gave them some money, some allowance for what they did.

What did they do? It wasn’t too complicated or difficult, like having someone help set the dinner table, someone wash the silverware, someone take out the trash (we have 3 sons), make their beds and pick out (with some help if needed) an outfit for school. Some five year olds at schools don’t know how to button up a coat. This takes dexterity  and some practice “before” they get to school, as the teacher doesn’t have time to attend to everyone, you know? Being competent in this way would probably impress her, too!

Doing chores is the “pillar of competence.” And as for an allowance, little ones would probably prefer a toy or special ice-cream over money. Tweens and teens enjoy having their own money, but don’t give them too much. If they get $5 dollars or more for chores you should take them to the bank and put some of it in savings (or the perennial piggy bank on  the dresser).

Lastly, they need to stay “healthy enough” to do these chores. Please get your child “up-to-date” vaccines, be they for COVID, measles, mumps, or what have you. Be happy you live in a country where there are so few childhood illnesses because concerned parents get their child needed shots, so then, they are  healthy enough to do chores. That’s a WIN-WIN situation!

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