Perhaps you’re thinking, I barely have time for chores myself, never-mind the extra time it will take to let/help my toddler do some!
I hear you.
Ending the cycle of always being SO busy has been a slow process in our home. It was cutting in on our ability to actually enjoy life, day by day. We were feeling stressed out about not spending enough time with our kids and what’s worse, spending time with our kids was being considered as something we had to do
I love hanging out with my kids; teaching them things, engaging in activities with them. I knew something had to change when the natural desires and responsibilities of parent-hood were starting to feel like just another thing that I was failing at.
So where does getting one’s toddler to do chores come into all of this? For me, it’s a way to incorporate them into the daily ‘grind’. Believe it or not, even at the young age of toddler-hood, a child can start to develop a sense of entitlement. I don’t know about you but my toddlers can be pretty demanding. By picking age appropriate tasks, sometimes I can turn those demands around on them. When one of them asks for milk or water for example, I now turn it around on them (after asking them to use their manners), to asking them to help me get it for them. Toddlers love to help. It’s really important to start giving them responsibilities at this stage in the game, doing so will help them develop their independence and teach them about responsibly, contributing to the family and household.
These are habits we want them to pick up, right? My little ones are 17 months and 3 1/2 years old and the following list rolls out some of the ways we get them to help out. Even if it’s not done perfectly or as quickly – I really believe we’re onto something good here. Plus, they love it. I know it won’t always be that way – but at least it won’t be a foreign idea because they are used to me or their father doing everything for them.
- Putting books away
- Organizing toys during tidy-up
- Helping wash (rinse) the dishes
- Wiping tables and counters
- Putting away clean laundry
- Loading non-breakables into the dishwasher
- Taking out the garbage
Remember to keep it simple, fun and age appropriate! I’m trying to get down with the fact that things will never, ever (at least until they’re grown and gone), be as consistently tidy or clean as they once were. I can kill myself trying to keep it that way or I can enjoy my kids and involve them in my ‘adult’ responsibilities a little more.
More Babbles From Selena…
- Toddler Yoga, it’s a thing.
- A&W’s Book Club
- Cupid made me do it.
- The politics of toddler hair (around here)
- On Getting Toddlers to Eat Their Greens
- 5 Healthy Snacks for Toddlers
- 5 Ways to Keep Fit When You Have No Time
- Natural Ways to Treat a Toddler’s Cold/Flu (That actually work!)
- Third time’s a charm? Oh potty-training…we’ll conquer you yet!
Elsewhere on the internets…
Via my humble beginnings, mastering in general mayhem: le petit rêve.