When Making Kids Do Household Chores – 5 Common Mistakes Parents Must Avoid

When it comes to making kids help with the household chores, many parents from the West tend to be a bit lenient and exempt young kids from helping at home. There’s this common misconception that they are incapable of helping because of their age.

However, in other cultures—from the farmers in the Yucatan to the foragers in Tanzania, parents use the opposite approach: as soon as the kids start to walk, parents will give them tiny subtasks to accomplish.

Common Mistakes Parents Must Avoid When Making Kids Do Household Chores.
Image Credit – Annie Spratton Unsplash

Eventually, children will learn what needs to be done. When they become preteens, parents won’t need to ask them what to do. In fact, asking them would be disrespectful as it would imply they have not matured yet.

Nowadays, there are ingenious ways to get your kids to help with the household chores. For starters, parents now make use of chore apps to get the help they need at home. Others take things up a notch by getting them a debit card for kids so they can teach them hard work and financial responsibility at the same time.

Common Mistakes Parents make when Kids do Chores.

While getting kids to help around the house is a lot easier now, parents still commit a few blunders now and then. Below are some of the most prevalent mistakes parents should avoid when asking kids to help with the household chores:

Mistake #01: Not explaining the purpose of the chore.

It’s safe to assume little kids won’t often fully understand why they are asked to put the laundry away or sweep the floor. When assigning chores, you must explain to them what the purpose of the chore is. It is also ideal that you explain how the chores can help them once they are adults and living on their own.

When getting kids to help with household chores one common mistake Parents Make when kids do chores is Not explaining the purpose of the chore.
Explain to your child the purpose of the Chore – Image Credit CDC Unsplash

Mistake #02: Not assigning chores that are age-appropriate.

While unfortunate to note, some parents can underestimate the capabilities of their children. If anything, most children are not only smart, they are also fast learners. That said, if they can’t get a chore right after a week or two, consider assigning another one.

Another option would be to give them more appropriate tasks for their age, so it’s easier for them to do.

When getting kids to help with household chores one common mistake Parents Make when kids do chores is not assigning chores that are age-appropriate.
Give your child Chores that are Age Appropriate – Image Credit Daniel Watson Unsplash

Mistake #03: Paying them to do basic chores.

Kids must be aware of the importance of contributing to the household and completing chores assigned to them. However, it is also essential that you educate them that they won’t get paid pocket money for every chore they do. Case in point: they should not be rewarded for basic tasks like making their bed.

Placing dirty clothes in the hamper or making their beds should not be considered chores. Instead, it should be seen as something they can do to help keep the house clean and organized. However, it would be fair to compensate them for doing tasks that are beyond the basics, like raking the leaves or throwing away the garbage.

When getting kids to help with household chores one common mistake Parents Make when kids do chores is paying them to do basic chores.
Image Credit Annie Spratt Unsplash

Mistake #04: Not rewarding their efforts accordingly.

When asking your kids to help with the chores at home, giving them some form of incentive can go a long way. Fortunately, there is no shortage of enticing rewards and incentives you can provide aside from money.

For starters, you can also reward them with other fetching perks like extra play time with friends or siblings or additional time they can spend watching TV, reading their favorite books, or playing their favorite video game.

When getting kids to help with household chores one common mistake Parents Make when kids do chores is not rewarding their efforts accordingly.
Extra time on Video Games as a reward- Image Credit Kelly Sikkema Unsplash.

Mistake #05: Constantly criticizing their efforts.

For preschoolers and toddlers, even the most basic chores can be challenging to navigate. With that in mind, it is recommended that you encourage them to do the task to the best of their ability rather than criticizing their efforts.

Praising their efforts and complimenting them for trying their best will not only motivate them to do better, it can also make them feel like their efforts are appreciated.

When getting kids to help with household chores one common mistake Parents Make when kids do chores is constantly criticising their efforts.
Praise your child’s efforts – Image Credit Guillermo Latorre Unsplash

Final Thoughts

Getting kids to help with the household chores can be a tall feat. The good news? As long as you avoid some of the most basic mistakes we have mentioned above, the goal should be easier to accomplish.

About the Author:

Samantha Green is the Content Marketing Strategist for the MCA award-winning app, BusyKid, the first and only chore and allowance platform where kids can earn, save, share, spend, and invest their allowance. A mom of two, she enjoys spending time with her kids and reading books to them.

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3 Thoughts to “When Making Kids Do Household Chores – 5 Common Mistakes Parents Must Avoid”

  1. These are common yet preventable mistakes. Hopefully, parents in early stages will be able to take heed and put things in practice immediately. It is always easier to start with expectations early. I really enjoyed this post.

  2. Good read mate.
    My kids know what they are capable of when it comes to chores.

    Children do need to have a sense of responsibility and accountability. I think chores are a great way to do it.

    However we do get “I do that all the time”.

  3. Ian Northeast

    Great article and some fabulous points.

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