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Home LEARNING Play & Toys First Step To Motivate Kids To Help with Chores

Whether big kids or little kids, everyone needs motivation to do things that are considered less interesting in life. For example house chores and routine rituals.

In order to promote what we as parents ‘beg’ them to do, we first have to perform the task in the rightful manner, then empowerment may come into picture. It is easier this way because children in general are the adults wannabes. Hence whatever that a parent or someone older can do, the thought has been instilled in the kids - I want to do it! It just the matter of time this child translates it into action, depending on his/her own confidence.

For Austin who has just turned 4 yo, I wish to encourage him to help out with chores. Like what most parents did, I started by telling him everyday that he has to manage his school bag before bed time. Two weeks passed, and I still had to remind him daily. This gesture was frustrating to me because I had to preach and repeat the same thing and again everyday. Austin was equally frustrating when he realized of his missed ‘chore’ at the last moment of the day, when everyone was waiting for heads to hit on pillows. Neither you nor me would like that too.

Therefore, I decided to empower him. Firstly, we need to have a chore chart for kids that is simple to read and comprehend. Who is doing what on which day of the week. I see this as the first step to groom him in planning. I just coach him on how the chore chart may look like. Then, I empowered Austin to decide and fill up the names. He also understood which chore that he can do by himself, or he can own up without his parents help.

Then, we put up this chore chart in a place that everyone can refer to.

Whenever Austin can't recall who is on duty, he would go to the chore chart for kids. For instance, in the evening at dinner time, we would start by thanking God. So, the little boy will find out of today’s day from our digital calendar, then check out on the chore chart (e.g. Lead Grace + Thursday = Austin) before announcing to the world.

Learning intention here:

    * Recognize day by referring to calendar.
    * Grooming a planner. Allow children to schedule, put thoughts in paper as a chore chart.
    * Ownership or accountability. When kids assign the chores, they tend to develop the ownership in themselves.
    * Teamwork. Seeing chores can be shared in week though the person is doing it individually each day.
    * Chore chart as a living skill tool - this can be applied throughout schooling years and in life.

After establishing this chore chart, I can’t remember when was the last time I have to remind him to manage his school bag. Now, he can even tell me when I forget mine, to fill up his drinking water before leaving for school! I don’t doubt, he is really a fast learner.




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