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Monday, May 19, 2014

Age appropriate chores - 2's and 3's

In our Mom's group, we started talking about age appropriate chores.  So this week I thought I would share my lists of chores and what is age appropriate.

Some things we need to remember about 2's and 3's, and continue to remember as they grow up, are they need help.  They need a teacher.  So while these are age appropriate, I would probably always say that you can't just have them do them on their own.  They should be working alongside you, not alone.

It's more than just that they are still learning to focus.  It's a pleasure for them to work with their mommy/daddy at this time.  They love being big and helping, but it's not as much fun, if they are being big and helping on their own, while Mom is doing other things.

So let them help while you are doing these things:

  • Dishes - mine stood on a chair and played in the rinse water and "rinsed" while I washed.  The bigger ones were the dryers.  Did I really need a rinser?  No.  In fact, the "rinser" probably made more work for me at the sink.  But he wasn't off being naughty and so maybe it was less work to have him with me.
  • Baking cookies - stirring, taste-testing, etc.  And then cleaning up, see Dishes.
  • Laundry - they can help remove clothes from the dryer.  Yes, you will have to help them learn to be careful of buttons and zippers.  Pour the soap in when you start the washer.  They probably won't be able to measure it yet.
  • Making beds - they can help put the stuffed animals neatly on the bed after you have helped them pull up the covers
  • Dirty laundry - when they take off their clothes, they can learn to put their clothes into the basket.
  • Pick up toys - they even are quick to pick up how they are sorted.  A friend has her toys in bins and when I was over there the two and three year olds were showing me which bins which toys go in. 
  • Dusting - they won't get all the corners, but they can hold a dustrag while you are dusting. 
Keep your child involved and remember training is a big part of your day when you have a toddler.  It's easier to put them in front of the TV, but it's not training them a lot.  They aren't learning how to interact, or how to handle frustrating situations.  These things are good for them.  As moms, we want to take the frustration out of their day, but it's not healthy for them.

Summer is a great time to learn something new.  Take each child and spend just five to ten minutes each day with them teaching them one new chore.  Don't change the chores around, just let them learn that one new chore until they can do it all by themselves.  With a toddler, you would have to pick a chore that they would be capable of alone.  I'm not thinking of making beds, or dusting, or washing dishes.  But getting the clothes out of the dryer and pushing the basket into the living room to fold, that's fun when the laundry basket is a car and you're driving it to the store.  

Keep pressing on,

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