Friday, April 6, 2012

Chores Your Children Can Do

I never would have thought (or maybe I just never thought about it) that 2 and 3-year-olds can do chores, but they certainly can.......and should!  It instills a sense of responsibility, helps them appreciate and take care of the things that God gives us, and makes them feel like an important member of the family whose help is needed.  Children at this age also like to please their parents (not always! lol) and so it makes them happy to see us happy.  Ryan has two chores that he must do daily.  We have decided on two for his age of 2.......soon to be 3 so we may just have to add one!!!!  lol  Hhhmmm, age 18 should be interesting..... I won't have to do any chores.  ha ha :)  Any way, daily he must feed Allie (our dog) her breakfast and dinner and he also must clean up his toys, usually before nap and before bed.  He does pretty well with feeding Allie.  Sometimes he will spill her food all over or say "Allie's not hungry" or "I don't want to feed Allie," but for the most part he does it without challenge.  We do supervise because he can tend to feed her WAY to much or sometimes only a morsel or two!  lol  It's usually a little harder to get him to help clean up his toys because he will start getting distracted and begin playing with the toys he should be putting away.  We definitely have to help him, too, or he will get really frustrated and say he can't do it.  There are those wonderful times when he just does it all on his own without being asked.  It's also pretty funny when he "tells" on Hunter for making a mess! 
Other chores that have not been delegated to Ryan, but he usually asks to help with, include unloading the dishwasher (which he will one by one tell me what each item is as he hands it to me), helping me with the laundry (putting clothes in the washer and transferring them to the dryer; again telling me each article of clothing and who it belongs to), and helpng to prepare meals, which is ALWAYS interesting!!!!!!!!

It's important to remember that it is about building character and not about the hassle of it.  It is way easier to just do it ourselves, and there is sometimes a mess to be cleaned up after the chore, so it can be time consuming, but it is so worth it to take that time and energy to encourage them to be contributing members within the household.  There is the added bonus of QT, too! 

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