Age appropriate chores for kids! These chore list ideas are easy enough for your child to do, and help take some of the responsibility off of you.
I know it can seem like a pain to have your kids do chores.
It feels faster to just do it yourself, and you can make sure it gets done correctly.
But here’s the thing…
Kids who do chores become more responsible adults.
Having your children pitch in around the house:
- Makes them feel like they’re contributing something of value.
- Teaches them life skills they’ll use the rest of their life.
- Helps them understand that it takes continued effort to keep a home running smoothly.
- Offers the opportunity for pride in a job done well.
- Takes some of the load off of you.
And don’t be afraid to start ‘em young!
If your child can walk, they can do some simple, age appropriate chores. Yep, even toddlers.
The earlier you start having your kids do chores, the sooner they’ll be good at it.
Plus, they’re usually more willing to help when they’re little.
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How to Get Kids to Do Chores
Before you start assigning jobs around the house, there are a few things to consider.
After all, they’re just kids!
Don’t insist on perfection
It’s okay if the task isn’t done exactly how you’d do it.
If you find yourself re-doing the chore, or criticizing how it was done, your son or daughter will lose enthusiasm quickly.
They will get better at it in time.
Just try to embrace the fact that you didn’t have to do it yourself!
If your kids aren’t being as cooperative as you’d like, be consistent with the consequences until it becomes a habit.
You know your child best, so brainstorm ways to motivate them.
Some kids respond better to positive rewards (like earning allowance or screen time), and others are motivated to avoid punishment.
Let them help decide
We all have different personalities, with tasks we enjoy more than others.
Children are the same!
Make a list of age appropriate chores, and let your child decide which they’re willing to do.
That’s not to say that they can’t also have regular daily tasks that are non-negotiable. But for weekly chores, having their input means they’ll be more willing to contribute.
Kids need to feel like they’ve been heard. Not like they’re living in a dictatorship.
Give them praise
Giving compliments and praise (when earned) is an excellent way to get anyone to do anything!
It makes them feel valued, and proud of their effort.
Praise your child’s efforts if they’ve done a particularly good job, or took on more responsibility than asked.
This is a lesson within a lesson – it also teaches your child to offer praise to others when they’re inspired or impressed.
Give specific directions
It’s important to remember that your child has probably never done that task before.
The more specific you can be, the better.
Walk him or her through the chore one little step at a time for the first few tries.
Use simple language that they’ll understand.
Easy, age appropriate chores for kids
There are actually plenty of laundry tasks that kids can do.
With the exception of operating the washer and dryer, it’s one of the easiest tasks to start kids with.
Even very young children can:
- Sort dark and light clothing
- Fold towels, washcloths, and small clothes
- Match socks
- Put their laundry away
- Unload the dryer
2. Clear the dinner table
In an effort to teach your kids to clean up after themselves, have them clear the table after dinner.
If they’re really young, start by having them bring their own plastic dishes to the sink or the counter.
They can also help wipe down the table after all the dishes have been cleared.
3. Set the table
Most kids really like helping to set the table for some reason.
Start them on the non-sharp, non-breakable items, and grow from there.
4. Pick up after themselves
It’s never too early to your children the adage “Don’t put it down, put it away.”
When they’re done playing with a toy, reading a book, or wearing an outfit, teach them the next step: Put it away.
At the very least, have them tidy the areas where they’ve left a mess.
Before meals, outdoor play, at bedtime, or when leaving the house are all good times to incorporate this routine.
5. Make their bed
Even very young children can learn how to straighten out their sheets, or at least pull the comforter up.
Add it right into their morning routine: Brush teeth and hair, get dressed, and make the bed.
6. Choose outfit for next day
To avoid fights in the morning, try having your child choose his or her own outfit for the next day.
Anytime kids feel like they got to make the decision, they’re far more willing to cooperate.
If you’re going somewhere that requires a certain type of clothes (such as church), give them some guidelines. Or specific options to choose from, at the very least.
7. Small kitchen tasks
It will serve your children well as adults if they know their way around the kitchen.
And since they eat food, there’s really no reason why they can’t pitch in!
Here are some ways kids can help in the kitchen:
- Put away groceries
- Wash produce
- Simple meal prep (with a plastic knife when appropriate)
- Help clean out the fridge
- Sweep the floor
8. Dry mop floors
Have your child push a dry mop around the hard-surface flooring of your home.
They’ll think it’s a fun game, and it will help pick up dust, pet hair, and fine dirt and crumbs.
9. Empty or load dishwasher
A routine daily task like putting away dishes is a great habit to instill when your child is young.
That way, by the time they’re 6 years old or so, they can take the job completely off your hands.
Start with unloading clean dishes, and eventually teach him or her to rinse and load the dishwasher.
Depending on the age of your child, you may need to handle the sharp knives and breakable dishes first.
10. Feed pets
Helping to take care of the household pets is SUCH a great way to teach young children responsibility, and how to care for another creature.
Using a measuring cup, your young child can pour dry food into a dish.
Then add on more detailed pet care tasks as they get older.
Ready to try giving your kids some chores?
As you can see, assigning some simple household tasks to your children will really serve them (and you!) well in the long run.
They’ll have a head start on being self-reliant when they leave your home and venture out on their own.
In the meantime, it takes some of the load off of you!
By the time they’re teenagers, they could be making dinner, doing their laundry, taking care of family pets, and handling many of the weekly cleaning chores.
They’ll have a good idea what it takes to run a household, and be a helpful spouse and partner as an adult.
There’s no end to all the benefits, so why not start today!
For more cleaning inspiration, check out:
- 6 Simple Ways to Keep Your House Clean ALL THE TIME
- 10 Minute Chores: Cleaning Tasks To Do When You’re Short on Time
- How to Clean Your House Really Fast (step by step!)