Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Toddler Chores

I (Betsy) have often heard that it takes more work for parents to be their toddler's employer than to do the chores themselves. I've also often heard that it's worth it in the long run to spend the time training your toddler. We've opted for the time-spent-now-will-be-worth-it-in-the-long-run approach, and our little toddler now has an unwritten list of expected chores! Granted, she does some of her "chores" more eagerly than others, but nonetheless, she is still contributing to the running of our household. Books like The Mommy Manual have good lists of suggested chores in them. We've asked our friends as well. Below is the list we've come to expect of our toddler, based upon recommendations, the abilities of our current toddler, and the current needs of our household; I encourage other toddler parents to examine their own household routines and their toddler--what can you be training and expecting your toddler to do? Here is what our toddler is working on:
  1. throwing things (diapers, Kleenexes, etc.) away upon request
  2. putting her dishes in the sink when she is through (plastic dishes only)
  3. carrying her milk cup to the fridge if it's not empty and can be saved for another meal
  4. carrying her (plastic) dishes to her little table for lunch
  5. putting away her play dishes if I've had to wash them
  6. picking up toys and other miscellaneous things off of the floor
  7. putting the soap in the dishwasher (we use the little soap packets)
  8. helping unload the silverware and her plastic dishes from the dishwasher
  9. starting the washing machine (we have a front loader and the button is on her level)
  10. helping feed our dogs (we fill up the scoop and she pours it into their bowls)
  11. getting toys/cups dropped from the twins' high chairs and returning them to the boys
  12. separating her clothes from her brothers' when I get the load out of the dryer
  13. putting bottles (once empty) into the sink
  14. getting miscellaneous things for her brothers (toys, socks, etc.)
  15. occasionally helping me cook! (stirring, dumping ingredients in, etc.)

1 comment:

Brandon's Rebecca Farquhar said...

May I encourage you to keep doing all this??? This is the way I was raised and I think it helped out my mom in the long run and we are trying to pass it on to our niece now. . .