CHORES!!!….UGH who truly wants to do them? Not Me, not my Husband and certainly not our Toddlers! Unfortunately for the four of us, we all have responsibilities in our home. All be it, quite often with VERY STRONG resistance… FROM ALL OF US! However, the importance of chores for toddlers goes beyond having a clean and safe home. This seemingly mundane task may help develop invaluable life skills in your toddler that will follow them into childhood, adolescence and eventually, adulthood.
It’s true, sometimes including our little ones in the tidying up process can be perceived as though we are doing more work. And truthfully, we probably are. Their disordered contribution may have us feeling as if we are not moving along fast enough or that they are making a monumental mess rather than helping out. Yet, this added effort is nourishing your toddler with competent skills they will carry with them throughout their lives.
Perhaps the most important reason to encourage toddlers to do chores is to develop competent life skills that may help them feel empowered and garnish independence. An empowered toddler may feel more confident to embrace and explore new tasks, activities and adventures. With positive praise and guidance, your little one may also develop a sense of pride in their work which may encourage them to further explore new skill sets.
Toddlers who are engaged in chores learn the concept of responsibility and good work ethics at an early age. If your child is expected to put their toys away before bed time for example, they begin to assimilate the concept of time management, task prioritization and discipline. All of which are important attributes that may help your little one better succeed in school, recreational activities and eventually a career.
Toddlers who are exposed to routine chores may be more likely take initiative. Being proactive about simple task such as picking up dinnerware and throwing away fruit peels is a huge accomplishment at this age. Taking initiative is a great leadership skill that demonstrates that your little one can think for him/herself in a resourceful manner.
Toddlers who engage in chores develop problem solving skills. Simple task such as sorting laundry, matching socks, organizing books by size or pattern or sorting toys are all great problem solving activities for your little one. Problem solving skills are important for toddlers particularly when they begin school as it may help them better communicate when they need to resolve conflict, express their feelings and thoughts or solve a problem.
Toddlers who do chores are contributing members of their home which cultivates a sense of pride and competency. As contributing members of the family, they begin to learn the importance of team work and the positive influence and impact their actions may have on their environment and the people around them. Hopefully, with positive nourishment, this will consciously lead them to become positive contributing members of their communities and society.
Introducing your child to chores as a toddler certainly does not seal the faith of their success. Nonetheless, this is an excellent time to teach toddlers essential life skills, as they will only become more adept and further develop these skills as they continue to grow (and eventually leave us…I’m not crying…that much!). Be aware however, that your little one will need a great deal of guidance and support, they are after all 4 years of age or younger. Yet, keep in mind that the added effort is well worth the outcome!
So now that we know the importance of chores for toddlers, how the heck to we get our little ones to do them? Well that’s post for another day. For now however, remember that your toddler is learning from you. Therefore, modeling the behavior and consistency are great starting points.
What are your thoughts on toddlers and chores? Are you in favor or them? Do you care for them? Do you think there is a benefit to them? What other benefits do you think chores can have on toddlers?
Until Next Time…Much Love!!!