Need help at home? Here are some tasks for kids by age
Chores are about being held accountable in the tiniest ways after all. So it’s important not to do every little thing for them so when they’re older, it wouldn’t be so hard to teach them to clean after themselves.
Tired of doing all of the household chores while your partner isn’t around? Your child may be able to help! Plus it's a great way for him to learn about work and responsibility. If you don’t know what chores are right for your kids' age, you can give these simple tasks for kids.
Don’t feel guilty for one second about giving your kids chores. It actually helps their development. Your children can learn better motor skills and responsibility. They can learn about cause-and-effect (if you make a mess, clean; if it stays messy, you could get sick). Plus, it’s a good bonding experience for both of you.
Don’t worry about your kids slowing you down. The more you give kids chores, the better they will become at it, and the faster it will get done. They can handle it!
Of course, you shouldn't give them chores beyond their age. You can still give tasks for kids that are age-appropriate.
Tasks for kids:
At this age, your kids learn from you and how you react to the world. So how you handle chores and how you delegate them will colour your kids’ attitudes to work.
It matters that you don’t treat chores like punishment. And when you tell them to do these tasks, don’t do it in a commanding, bossy tone.
Chores are about being held accountable for even small things. So it’s important not to do every little thing for them. That way, when they’re older, it won't be so hard to teach them to clean up after themselves. Here are a few tasks for kids you can try:
- Put laundry in the hamper/washer
- Keep their toys in a box or shelf
- Put books on the shelf
- Help feed the house pet
- Throw diapers into the garbage (although this one is tricky, make sure they don’t make a mess when they do so)
As your child gets older, they can do more chores independently. They'll even be able to help out with their own birthday celebrations. This is also around the time when they first go to school, so by now they will have learned more about responsibility from their classes. Here’s what they can manage:
- Help set the table
- Make their bed
- Water plants/the garden
- Help put away groceries
- Put non-breakable (not sharp) items in the dishwasher
- Switch laundry from the washer to dryer
- Help clear the dinner table
- Pack up their backpack for school
- Sort silverware
- Sweep floors
Once your child goes beyond the early years of elementary school, your tasks for kids become more complex compared to their earlier chores. Their capability to help out improves as well.
Not only can they help out, but they can do things on their own, too. Their responsibilities benefit not only them but the whole family.
Point this out to them, so that they become proud of how much they’re helping the family. Encourage them by praising them for their good work. Here are some tasks for kids that you can tell them to do:
- Clean their room
- Set the table
- Feed the family pet
- Help wash the car
- Take out the trash
- Rake leaves
- Help cook dinner or pack lunches
- Empty/load the dishwasher
- Put away groceries
- Bring in the mail
- Fold laundry and put it away
Age 11 and Older
When your child reaches middle school, they will ask for more independence in their social life and school. Tell them that part of this independence is the ability to clean up after yourself and handle bigger chores.
You can start with teaching your kids how to cook their food, wash their clothes, and wash their dishes. Don’t worry if they don’t do it right the first few times, it’s part of the learning process. You can consider giving these tasks for kids:
- Bake/cook with limited supervision
- Pack their school lunch
- Clear the table and put dishes in the dishwasher
- Wash dishes
- Help clean the kitchen
- Clean their bathroom
- Mow the lawn
- Do laundry
- Wash the car
- Walk the dog
- Watch younger siblings for short periods of time