It’s important that children learn to obey their parents, but do they understand what we’re asking? When it comes to chores there are always things to do and not only is it great to have your kids help lighten the load, but it’s great to teach them how to do these things on their own because learning responsibility and life skills are also very important. From the time children are very young they can learn to follow directions, but knowing what you can realistically expect from kids at different ages can be a bit confusing.
You can start by trying to determine what your child is capable of doing. Of course you don’t treat a teenager like you would a ten-year-old, and you don’t treat a ten-year-old like you would a three-year-old. It’s important to adjust your level of communication and delegation. Then watch for signs that your kids get it. Younger children may give you a simple expression that says,” I don’t understand”. Sometimes you’ll see a level of disappointment or frustration when children are carrying out something you’ve asked them to do. That can be a sign to step in, offer help, and re-explain expectations. One of the greatest challenges of parenting is walking that fine line between unrealistic expectations and not enough expectations. Here are some tips to help.
Get your child to try various chores and see what they can and can’t do. For young children start with tasks that can be done quickly and simply. Never start them off with something difficult or something that could be dangerous. Always give them a good example of how it is done and demonstrate slowly and clearly. Some children might get upset if they can’t do something properly. They may not want to try again so try and start by getting them to help you with little things. They can help you with laundry by passing you the clean clothes to fold and they can observe how you fold laundry. If they want to try and fold the same item of clothing beside you that is great, just take each step slowly.
Some like to jump right in and try things, so send them on their way of cleaning what you ask, just be sure to stay nearby as some may take it upon themselves to do things you didn’t want them to do. For example, if they struggle and can’t dust the T.V properly, then have them set the table. Praise your child for any progress you see. Consider setting up some sort of reward system. There are tons of charts online to help keep track of it all and you can go over it with your child while figuring out what their reward will be. And finally, gradually challenge your child with more difficult tasks. If your child can dry the dishes, have them try washing them. The more your children are challenged, the more they will try and the more success they and you will enjoy.