Teaching your kids to do household chores can be a challenge, but it's also an opportunity to teach them valuable life skills. The truth is, if you want your kids to become independent and confident adults, they'll need to learn how to take care of themselves and their space. It's also a great way to set them up for success when they move out and have their own apartment, or even just share one with a roommate. Here are some tips for teaching your kids to do household chores:
Start with a clean slate
Before you even consider making your kids do household chores, make sure that your own house is in order. If there's clutter everywhere, or if the dishes haven't been done for days, it's going to be difficult for your kids to find a place for themselves in this environment (as well as feel motivated enough to even try). If you don't have time/energy/motivation to clean up at least a little bit before starting this process, then take some time off from your normal routine—even just one day—and get things back in order before continuing.
Make sure everyone knows their responsibilities
Make sure they follow through on them. As much as you'd like to think that your kids will always do what they're told, there will be times when they don't follow through. That's okay. Just make sure they know what their responsibilities are, and encourage them as much as possible when they do it right.
Children learn best through positive reinforcement
Try not to get frustrated if something isn't done right the first time or even the second time. Instead, try using positive reinforcement when things go well—letting them know that you're proud of them for doing such a great job can go a long way toward encouraging them in other areas as well.
Get them involved in the process
Let them know how much easier it will be for everyone if they pitch in. For example, when you're making dinner, ask them to stir something or put an ingredient on the counter for you. The next time you're making dinner, see if they'd like to try cooking some of the ingredients themselves. You might need to supervise at first, but eventually, they'll get the hang of it. And this gives them some responsibility while also giving you some free time.
If possible, let them choose their own tasks
For example, let's say your kid wants to help with laundry—what could he do? Maybe they could fold towels or sort socks by colour (and then put those away). Or maybe they want to clean up and wash their school shoes. This way, you can guide them on how much amount of washing liquid they should use etc.
Give praise where it's due
If your child does something well, make sure you let them know how much you appreciate their efforts. You can consider offering rewards like extra screen time or special treats as incentives for completing chores successfully on time, without being asked twice. This will encourage your child to try harder when it comes time for their next chore assignment so they can earn another reward next time around. It will also help them feel good about themselves and encourage them to keep trying new things in the future.
Teaching your kids to do household chores is a great way to help them develop responsibility and independence. It also gives them an opportunity to learn how to work collaboratively with the rest of the family, which can be a valuable life skill.