I was surfing around the boards at MomDot Forum when I noticed a bloggy bud of my Crystal had a post up titled I’m Your Mother, Not Your Maid and the title alone intrigued me! I headed over and read her blog post which was something I could relate to. Take a moment to read her post after you finish reading here …. she needs some advice and I am curious to see what you all think on my advice and what I have done with my kids.
Here is what I did with my oldest child … when she was old enough to start walking around, maybe between age 1 and 2, I started incorporating her into the household chores. Granted with my first born it was easy, she was my only child and I was a single full time working mom. Kee (easier to pronounce than my previous KI) enjoyed helping me fold laundry, assist in washing dishes, help put clothing in their drawer, put her toys away when done with them, etc etc.
The Year 2009
Kee is now 7 years old, she has two brothers ages 3 and 1 and I am going through a separation with my husband and starting a part time job while still continuing my efforts to support the PTO website, my business, my blog, another blog with MomTV show, Girl Scouts and well keeping up with a hyperactive, aggressive 3 year old. Half the time I hardly even know what chores are , let alone get them done or incorporate the children into them. This is BAD, I know.
I can now see how much I have slacked in keeping up with my original idea of teaching children to do chores from a young age …. my once “Happy to assist” 7 year old is now the “Miss attitude of the house” who refuses to even put her dirty clothes in the hamper that is IN HER OWN ROOM, yes yes I have started being lazy and my children have followed in tow.
My Plans For 2009 And Beyond
I am going to move forward in setting up a chart that details out what each family member is responsible for, after all come Sunday I will be the only adult taking care of the children. Now I may get a room mate, but when it comes to the kids I will be the primary caregiver and so now lazy is not a term allowed in my home!
I will start by having Kee do the chores she knows how to do … she loves cleaning the shower (odd?) so I may get some cleaners that are safe for her or just have her clean it with soap and water so she feels “important” then go clean that myself for “real” afterwards. Kee can also keep her room organized, her dirty clothes in her hamper and her clean clothes hanging or in her bureau where they belong. Kee is also going to be held responsible to help pick up all her brothers toys she enjoys getting all over my kitchen, living room and yes sometimes the bedroom and bathroom too.
My three year old will be held responsible for helping Mommy fold clothes, and placing his clothes in his bureau with my help. AJ can also help sweep the floor, dry the dishes and other miscellaneous chores that come to mind that are appropriate for his age.
My one year old, can do what he already does, help take care of the toys and help Mommy fold laundry … it’s so cute how he folds the laundry!
The Key To Chores
There is no HUGE SECRET in success with chores, it’s pretty simple, be consistent and try to have your child(ren) involved in every step of chores as they grow up, because then you “should” (I use that term lightly) have teens who are already aware of their household responsibilities and will give less attitude or at least give attitude while still completing their necessary chores. I am a firm believer that once you involve your child for years in the chore department and stick with it, it’s simply a matter of everyday life and it will come naturally to your child(ren) to do the chores based on a habit of living.
Share your ideas, stories? Comment below, happy to read all comments!
Make it a Happy Day!