23 Oct, 2019 Benefits of Teaching Your Kids To Do Chores
There are many benefits in teaching your kids to do chores. Not only does it help lighten your load, but kids learn responsibility and fine motor skills.
contributing writer ~ Marie Carla Mata
As a parent, you can’t help but feel proud when your kid exceeds expectations. For instance, many people assume kids are too young to understand or do chores. However, we can teach our kids to do chores as long as simple instructions and clear rewards are given. There are plenty of opportunities for parents to teach kids, especially when it comes to daily routines like washing the dishes, folding clothes, cleaning the furniture, and such. According to a recent article by Laura Weldon on Wired, kids at all different growing stages, benefit from doing chores. Examples include motor skills, counting, patience, social skills, and many more. Even teacher and blogger Megan Zeni, gives numerous reasons why chores are a crucial part of a children’s development years. Here’s a closer look at how these benefits help your kids.
Fine Motor Skills
These refer to small movements that involve the hands, fingers, wrists, feet, and toes. There are several chores that can hone your kid’s fine motor skills like meal preparation, washing, using small tools, and the like. If you’re preparing a salad for dinner, you can have your children tear the lettuce into bite-sized pieces. You can also have them use a screwdriver if you’re doing some mechanical repairs.
Cutting with scissors also counts as a fine motor skill that your kids can hone. When letting them do this, just make sure to supervise them closely so that they’ll know how to use these tools correctly. Otherwise, they might get injuries from using scissors, screwdrivers, and other tools with sharp or pointy parts.
Good Motor Skills
Whereas fine motor skills pertain to small movements, large motor skills involve the legs, arms, and torso. Household chores that require the use of these muscles include garden work, doing groceries, indoor cleaning, mowing the lawn, and such. If you need help in landscaping or cleaning your lawn, you can let your children help by digging soil, carrying water cans, or raking the fallen leaves. If there are grocery bags in the car that need to be carried all the way indoors, you can let your children carry these as well. Finally, if the living room, basement, or bedrooms need sweeping or mopping, these can develop your kids’ large motor skills too. All of these are benefits of teaching your kids to do chores.
Growing children can learn counting and real-world math from doing chores. You can make them do kitchen tasks that call for precise measurements, such as getting spoonfuls of powder for a recipe or pouring quantities of coffee beans into a grinder. By letting them learn this, your kids are able to exercise their counting skills to the point that they can do it mentally with comfort.
You can also have your kids exercise their counting by tasking them with preparing a number of plates at the table. If you’re having seven or more guests over for dinner, you can say so to your kids, who would then figure out how many servings of the meal need to be prepared.
If your children are too young for counting, you can have them do sorting tasks instead. Experts explain that this improves kids’ ability to create sets or follow rules of classification. A popular example would be doing laundry, which requires certain kinds of clothes to be separated from one another. You can have your kids separate white clothes from the colored ones, which lets them use not only sorting but their ability to identify colors. Socks, mittens, and articles of clothing that come in pairs can also be used to teach kids how to sort. Besides laundry, you can also let your children clean up their room by organizing toys, books, and crayons in different containers.
There are tasks and simple actions that teach kids all about time, be it paced tasks or looking at the clock. When giving your young ones a task such as cleaning the leaves or watering the plants outside, you can set a time limit for each. Say that a specific task needs to be done in 20 minutes, while the other one in 10 minutes. This teaches children to focus and maximize the time given in completing the task. You can also have your kids watch over the washing machine or the dishwasher as it does the wash cycle. Doing so can let your children be aware of the time and monitor it closely.
Simple tasks like fixing the bed after waking up, disposing of trash in cans, or wiping spills quickly can teach kids to clean up after themselves. Not everyone practices this, but this is a valuable habit that will help kids when they grow up. Maintaining cleanliness makes a good impression on other people as well as keep contaminants and odor at bay. This also teaches your children that they are responsible for their own messes since they’ll grow up one day and parents will not be there to help them. Getting these tasks down will also help your children get hired or run their own company in the future.
Saving and Valuing
You can also teach your young ones how to handle money, whether you’re at the grocery store or another commercial establishment. This lets them learn about the monetary value of certain items like cereal, chocolate, and other products that they may have asked for you to buy. By knowing how much these items cost, you can instill in your kids an appreciation for the funds that you have, the importance of not wasting, as well as the idea of saving up money for important use.
You can give them a piggy bank for storing spare change, only to be opened when full. By letting your kids look for certain items, identify their price, and letting them go to the cashier for payment, this experience can make your kids overcome their fears of going and buying items at the grocery store.
By now, the benefits of teaching your kids to do chores is clear. Even Madonna gave some parenting tips where she said that a rule in her house was that her children did regular chores. Children become more dexterous or skilled in using tasks that require hand movements, be it something small like tearing lettuce for salads or something big like digging up dirt in the garden. They also become comfortable with counting numbers, be it the number of plates to be served or the coins needed to buy a grocery item. Kids also learn to sort things and clean up after themselves, which is a skill that can spread outside their bedroom. These are the many positives of starting your children while they are young with doing chores.
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