Some parents are reluctant to assign chores, especially when their child’s week is already crammed with homework and after-school activities. In many homes, children are left alone to play video games, surf the Internet, and watch cartoons. Are
However, consider some benefits of household chores—not only for the upkeep of the home but also for a child’s development.
Chores contribute to a child’s maturity. Children who take on household tasks are likely to be more successful at school, and no wonder. Helping out around the house helps a child develop confidence, self-discipline, and strength of character—essential tools for learning.
Chores prepare children to serve others. Some have observed that children who are expected to help out at home are more likely to take on community service as adults. This is hardly surprising, since chores train them to put others’ needs above their own. On the other hand, when nothing is expected of them, children learn that they are here to be served, and they grow up with a distorted view of what life will require of them in the way of responsibility and hard work.
Chores promote family unity. Through their efforts at home, children come to realize not only that they are a valued part of the family but also that they have a responsibility toward it. This lesson can be lost when parents place a higher priority on after-school activities than on chores.
However, some parents are oblivious as to how early a child should be assigned chores. So they decides to wait till a child is grown and strong enough to do major house chores.
Sadly, children who are not assigned chores early enough finds it difficult when there are grown.
It is important to note that there are age-appropriate chores. For example, a three-year-old might pick up toys, clean up spills, or sort laundry. Older children can vacuum, wash the car, and even prepare a meal. Work with your child’s ability. You might be surprised at how enthusiastic he or she becomes about handling chores.
Place a priority on chores. That might be difficult when your child faces a daily mountain of homework. However, eliminating chores for the sake of high grades is a sign of misplaced priorities. As stated earlier, handling chores helps children become better students. And the lessons learned prepare them for the time when they will have a family of their own.
Parent should focus on the objective rather than the result. It may take your child longer to complete a task than you would wish. You may also notice that the quality of the work could be better. When that happens, resist the urge to take over the task. Your objective is not to have the chore performed with adult like precision but to help your child learn responsibility and discover the joy that work can bring.
Some say that paying a child to do chores teaches them responsibility. Others say that it makes children focus on what they can get from the family rather than on what they can contribute to it. They also warn that a child might refuse to do chores when he has enough money—a sign that the benefit of chores is being lost. The lesson? It might be better to keep a child’s chores and his allowance on separate tracks.