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Durham Region, ON


Kid-Friendly Chores

Everyone wants to feel that they are needed – even kids. Having children start chores young helps them learn a sense of responsibility – and giving them something to do not only gets them off your back for a few minutes, but they will help you more than you think.

Here are some things to keep in mind when giving them a task.


Don’t insist on perfection – Giving them control over the task at hand is much more rewarding for them. If you are hovering over their chore you may find yourself taking the fun out of it for your child or you may end up doing the chore for them which would sabotage what you are trying to accomplish with your child.


Don’t Delay – You may think your child is too young to start doing chores, however you can start them off with a small chore as young as 2 years old. Bringing the dinner dishes to the counter or putting dirty laundry into the hamper are a few things to start them off and my end up helping you more than you thought.


Praise – Praising a child in the midst of a chore has much more reinforcement than just praising them afterwards. Try praising your child numerous times during a chore and numerous times afterwards to get a sufficient amount of positive reinforcement, especially in young children.


Be Consistent – Give your child a list of chores and let them pick the ones they would like to do. Create a chart with their chores with a deadline for when each chore needs to be done. Perhaps providing stickers for your child each time they finish a chore, to stick on their chart.


Be Specific – Telling your child “clean your room” is vague. That can be intimidating for the child. However, telling them to “put the book on the bookshelf” and “clothes in the closet” are more clear.


Don’t Micromanage – Giving deadlines to young children can be difficult. Try the “when/then” technique. “When you put your toys in the toy box then you can have dinner.”



Age Appropriate Kid- Friendly Chores


2 to 3

Put toys away

Fill pet food dish

Put clothes in hamper

Wipe up spills


Pile books and magazines


4 to 5

Any of the above

Make their bed

Empty wastebaskets

Bring in mail or newspaper

Clear kitchen table

Pull weeds from garden

Use handheld vacuum to pick up small messes

Water flowers

Unload utensils from dishwasher

Wash plastic dishes in sink

Make bowl of cereal


6 to 7

Any of above

Sort laundry

Set kitchen table

Help make and pack lunch

Rake leaves

Keep bedroom tidy


8 to 9

Any of above

Put away groceries


Help make dinner

Make own snacks

Wash table after meals

Put away own laundry

Make own breakfast

Peel vegetables

Mop floor

Take pet for walk


10 and up

Any of above

Unload dishwasher

Wash, Dry and Fold laundry

Clean bathroom

Wash windows

Wash car

Cook simply meal (with supervision)


Clean kitchen

Change bed sheets

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