We all know that toddlers are certainly capable of making messes and sometimes of epic proportions. I’m sure you’re familiar with the term “toddler tornado” and my Squeaker is no exception. Sometimes, it seems, that she’ll wait until I’m done picking up her toys before she follows my path to recreate the mess.
Is this intentional? Perhaps. I’d like to give her the benefit of the doubt.
She is still just a toddler, after all, but that doesn’t mean that she can’t help me out a bit. In fact, I was wondering about what chores I could possibly have her do. She does like to help with basic cat care like feeding and brushing. But what else can she do? What are other possible chore ideas for a toddler?
Young children, and in particular toddlers, tend not to see chores as work but as helpful play. And play is incredibly important for children.
By getting toddlers into the habit of performing chores, you can foster a sense of responsibility that will grow with them as they get older. With that in mind, here are 5 simple chores for toddlers that will not only help with your child’s development but will help you around the house too!
Tidy Away Toys
How often do children start playing with a number of their toys, create an almighty mess and then leave that mess behind them when they get distracted or drawn to other activities? By encouraging children to clean away their toys when they are finished playing with them, you will not only have a much tidier house, but you are teaching your toddlers an important lesson about their responsibilities.
Tidy Up Their Room
The sooner that children understand they their room is their responsibility, the better!
An untidy room leads to dirty clothes being worn twice, clean clothes being unnecessarily washed and important items going missing just when you need them! Toddlers should know that their shoes go in one place, their clean clothes stay in their closet or dresser and their dirty clothes go in the laundry basket.
Help with the Dishes
One brilliant way of introducing chores to toddlers is by giving them their own cupboard space in the kitchen where they can keep their own plates, cups and cutlery. This not only allows children to help put away their own dishes when they are cleaned, but can lead to children learning to set their own place at the table for meals.
Help with the Laundry
The number of young adults that end up moving out of home for the first time without the first clue about how to wash their clothes is truly frightening! Teach your toddlers the basics about how to wash clothes (note that they should never have access to any cleaning products directly), how to hang them up to dry and how to fold them and put them away in a closet or dresser.
For those parents who have a garden, or perhaps even an indoor plant, charging your toddler with the responsibility of watering a section of plants is a fantastic way of keeping them active and encouraging an interest in science! Toddlers who learn that plants need to be watered regularly to keep them alive quickly learn about the responsibilities of care and this lesson works well with toddlers who will eventually go on to look after pets.
Another way to encourage your toddler or help get your toddler involved with chores, is by using a chore chart. Yes, I can see the eye rolls and skeptical looks from some of you. But give it a chance. Sometimes a visual chart can make all the difference.
Try out my “I Can Help” printable chore cards and be on the look out for my “Taking Care of My Pet” printable pack coming soon!
Are you a parent of a toddler and have you tried chores yet? What have you tried?