You’re the parent, you can totally make the kids do stuff.

Well, you can defo make your own kids do chores. The kids next door, maybe not so much. But hey, worth a try!

From toddlers to teenagers, here’s a list of chores for kids of every age. Now cleaning the home can be a group effort. It’s not a hotel after all.

Side note: I AM actually turning into my own mother when I say that.


It’s not a job, it’s a responsibility

If I had a dollar for every time we said “it’s not a job, it’s a responsibility” to our kids over the years, I’d be a rich woman.

It’s important for kids to learn life skills (and they’re never too young to learn!), after all, if they don’t learn them at home, HOW ON EARTH are they going to learn to become responsible and well-functioning adults in the future?

Life skills aside, children can also feel more valued within their family when they have responsibilities and chores to keep the household cogs and family team moving. Everyone plays a part, no matter how big or small. Remember, there’s “NO I IN TEAM!”

stay home alone

Quickly accept things won’t be perfect and move on

A word of advice. Don’t insist on perfection straight away. When you have kids doing chores, you have to have a somewhat relaxed approach.

When starting out, you can’t expect kids to do a task as well as your well-rehearsed self. Definitely, don’t throw your hands up in the air in frustration and swoop in to do the job for them. THAT’S NOT WHAT IT’S ABOUT – they learn nothing about responsibilities, instead they quickly cotton on to the fact that if they do a shoddy enough job of something someone else will do it. We weren’t born yesterday kids…


Household chores for children of all ages

Chores for toddlers

With littlies, it’s important to focus on the act of helping, rather than the job – it saves them kicking up a stink later in life when they’re asked to do something! Helping should always be encouraged and keep the praise coming thick and fast to boost their confidence.

  • Put dirty clothes in a clothes basket
  • Pick up and put away toys
  • Help to put clothes away
  • Help clear the table
  • Help stack the dishwasher with plasticware
  • Help tidy-up in general


Chores for 4 to 7-year-olds

All previous household chores plus…

  • Help in the kitchen with meal prep
  • Set the table
  • Yard jobs – raking leaves, pulling weeds
  • Make their bed
  • Tidy their bedroom
  • Tidy the playroom
  • Dust furniture
  • Hang out laundry
  • Help sort laundry (match socks, sort piles etc)
  • Fold tea towels
  • Collect mail from the letterbox
  • Feed pets
  • Take the kitchen garbage out to the wheelie bin

toddler chores


Chores for tweens (8-12)

All previous household chores plus…

  • Keep their bedrooms clean and tidy
  • Make simple meals from scratch (breakfast, sandwiches, wraps etc)
  • Help shop for groceries
  • Put groceries away
  • Make their own school lunch
  • Take the bins out
  • Sort the recycling
  • Do a light load of laundry in the washing machine
  • Fold washing
  • Put washing away
  • Iron easy things (tea towels, handkerchiefs, pillowcases)
  • Clean toilets
  • Sweep
  • Vacuum
  • Mop floors
  • Load and unload a dishwasher
  • Wash, dry and put away dishes
  • Groom and walk pets
  • Wheel wheelie bins to the curb for rubbish collection


Chores for teenagers (aged 13+)

All previous household chores plus…

Let’s be honest, teenagers should pretty much be able to do anything you do, or at the very least a simplified version of it.

  • Clean a bathroom properly
  • Meal plan and create shopping lists
  • Shop for groceries
  • Cook a meal for the family
  • Mow the lawn
  • Babysit siblings
  • Change lightbulbs if required
  • Iron clothes
  • Strip and change bed sheets
  • Wash the car and clean car interior
  • Put the vacuum around

teen boy vacuuming kitchen floor


Should we give pocket money for chores?

Yes and no. The jury is out on this one – ultimately chores should be seen as a responsibility, something that’s done to help the family as a whole rather than a paid job. Money is kind of a lost currency on young children. HOWEVER, older kids are highly motivated by cash and it’s great in twisting their arm to do extra chores. #WINNING #MUMLIFE


Here’s the low down on 7 simple chores your toddler can actually help with at home, PLUS for those who are using pocket money as an incentive, here’s a post on how to teach your kids to manage money!

Author

South Australian mum and self proclaimed foodie, Lexi can most days be found in the kitchen, apron tied firm and armed with a whisk or wooden spoon!

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