Beyond the kids cleaning their rooms my kids don’t have set tasks to perform in our house though they are expected to contribute like everyone who lives in the house. According to an essay within the Wall Street Journal “Giving children household chores at an early age helps to build a lasting sense of mastery, responsibility and self-reliance”.
One way to get kids on board with doing chores is to not position them so much as a punishment but rather something everyone in the family does, contributing to the house running smoothly. Try involving the kids up front to talk about how they would like to help, what tasks they can take on. Having the right tools for the job can help too. We have a cupboard full of Vileda tools designed to handle certain jobs and the kids love to “load up” on their toolkit by selecting the items they think will make the job easier and faster.
Struggling with a few kid-friendly tasks beyond taking out the garbage and making their beds? There are a few of the tasks we put on the table for the kids to select:
Pet Care – We adopted three older cats almost a year ago and since they are indoor cats that means a litterbox. Although not a task young kids should be responsible for, older children can easily complete this job. Cleaning up after any household pet (cats, hamster, fish) reminds kids to care for others who can’t care for themselves. This Dustpan Set is usually the tool the kids choose for this task. It’s small enough to get into tight spots and it’s easy to store.
Washing Dishes – Like most families we do own a dishwasher and the kids do help by emptying the clean dishes and adding dirty dishes as they get used. Some of our dishes we do wash by hand, glasses with prints on them or odd shaped bowls. Well it seems having the kids wash dishes by hand is linked to lower allergies. My kids actually enjoy washing dishes over loading the dishwasher, especially when they get to use tools like this Dish Scrunge (the handle holds the dish soap) or this Mini Mop. A tad more fun than just a washcloth.
Clean the Sink – From water streaks and glass rings to soap residue and dried on toothpaste, it doesn’t take much for the sinks in the bathrooms to get messy. Although this brush is designed to clean tile and grout, it’s also perfect to clean around the edges of the taps, drain, and in our case the sink pedestal on the tile floor. This tool is so much better than an old toothbrush we enlisted for the task. The Vileda Microfibre 2-in-1 Bathroom Sponge Cloth has one side for cleaning the sink and another side to polish it up to a shine. Just toss into the laundry when done.
Dusting Blinds – We’re not big on curtains in our home, having custom blinds fitted between the windowpanes in our old house. Although the blinds sit between the outside storm/screen and the inside window, they still get dusty. Cleaning each slat can be a daunting task but the kids whip through it with this Blind Duster made with Electrostatic fibers to pick up dust. Just slide it along each blind and when they’re done the cloth can be removed and tossed into the washer.
Clean the Toilet – Not one of my favourite housecleaning jobs and usually one I do myself because of the hash toilet cleaners involved. That changed when I discovered Seventh Generation Toilet Bowl Cleaner, a non-toxic cleaner that really works. Now I have no problem handing this task over to the kids. You’d be surprised to find that my kids don’t mind this task at all and this Enclosed Toilet Brush with an added angled tip makes cleaning the bowl and under the rim even easier. The lids means I’m not staring at the brush and that’s a plus.
Clean the Mirrors – From the bathrooms to the hallway and even the ones in each child’s room, we seem to have more mirrors than a fun house. Getting the smudges and fingerprints off doesn’t have to mean a whole roll of paper towel when you use a Microfiber cloth. You can use these with your favourite cleaner (I like Method Glass + Surface Natural Cleaner or Better Clean’s I Can See Clearly, Wow), but we found these clothes can be just as effective on their own with a little water.
Of course these are just a few tasks we put on the table for our kids to do. Your chore list may be different depending on what needs to be done in the house and the ages of your children. Whatever the tasks, involve the kids up front and remind them that all family members need to work together to keep the house in order, not just mom. Give them a bucket to fill with the tools they need and maybe even create a chart of tasks for the week, like this free printable one from Freebie Finding Mom.
How do you handle chores in your household? Do your kids get involved with keeping the household running smoothly?
This post is sponsored by Vileda Canada but all opinions expressed within this post are my own.