As a parent, you are responsible for teaching your kids a multitude of things; from how to use a fork to how tact in social situations and so much more. However, one of the most important things we can teach our children is a sense of responsibility. A strong sense of personal responsibility is the key to becoming an independent and productive adult.
One of the best ways to teach your child about responsibility is to provide them with responsibilities of their own and to give them the tools that they need to accomplish them. Assigning chores for your child will not only teach them that they have a responsibility to assist with maintaining the family home but will help the family to develop a consistent routine daily and weekly. I firmly believe that every member of the family should play a part in the upkeep of a home and even children as young as 2 can contribute in significant ways.
Prepare a chore chart or list for your child including any tasks that they need to complete and how often they need to be completed. Since children’s abilities change and develop as they age, it is recommended to update your child’s list at the beginning of each school year. As a parent, you know what your child can or can not handle. Most pre-teen girls can handle their own laundry but pre-teen boys? Well that might be questionable! The important thing to remember is to have patience when showing them a new task as it may take some time for them to learn a new skill.
Lastly, I recommend that you also set up some type of accountability system for their tasks. If they do not complete their chores as instructed, there needs to be a consequence in place. Perhaps they only receive a portion of their allowance or even none at all. Or maybe their internet or game time is restricted. Whatever it is be sure that your enforcement of the rules is fair and consistent.
For those of you creating your chore charts I have compiled a list of the top chores and grouped them by recommended age group. Keep in mind, you know your child’s ability best!
Elementary Schooler Chores