While she’s pushing for independence and trying to find her place in her small world, D rarely passes up an opportunity to help. The moment I get out the vacuum, dust rag, Windex or Lysol, she is there with her eager “I want to do that!” In an effort to just get the chores done and marked off my list, there have been a couple times when I’ve started to say “No honey, I’m going to do this real quick.” Then I think, am I mad?? She loves to help; I love to have her help. How can I make this a lifetime habit?
Making use of this innate need to help and please, we decided she was ready for some age appropriate chores. She feeds the dog and sets the table daily and also does miscellaneous things around the house as needed (i.e. dusts, waters plants, vacuums, etc). We have a chart on the refrigerator where we keep track of accomplished chores. She earns a quarter in her “bank” for each chore she completes in one week. She earns approx $.75 per week which, for a 3-year-old, is pretty exciting. It also gives her the satisfaction of helping and earning recognition along the way. Eventually the chart will go away and the chores will roll into the daily routine without notice. For now, the tracking is fun and the allowance (which will continue) gives her choices, e.g. buy something small now or save up and buy something worth more later. So far she’s chosen to save.
I feel it’s important to add that in addition to her charted chores, she is expected to make her bed and pick up her toys. We choose not to reward for these duties since they are her personal belongings and, thus, her responsibility.
What chores have you relinquished to your kids?