Learn to navigate communicating the importance of doing chores to your kids and form your perspective on how chores can impact your family.
WHAT PARENTS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF KIDS DOING CHORES
Thousands of decisions are made every day. In fact, it has been estimated that the average American makes approximately 35,000 decisions per day. It’s like driving a car with endless possible turns. You need a map or a GPS system to help you along the way. No wonder it’s so easy to get distracted or thrown off course in our daily lives. Add the human tendency toward the “easy road” and seeking pleasure and you have a recipe for procrastination when it comes to the mundane and never-ending call of doing chores.
Are chores truly conquerable for all? As a counselor, I’ve worked with families that have a well-oiled chore system in their home and others with disastrous over-run homes. What is the difference? The difference is in the personalities, the relationships, and the plan.
When our kids are confronted with the decision between a chore or a task needing to get done and a break, how do we teach them to make a responsible decision? It depends on the initial interpretation and the natural tendencies within each person. God created all of us for both relationship and work.
So, how can you manage daily chores for your kids this year with all the possible twists and turns from these 35,000 daily possibilities? The answer hides within an attempt to manage your responsibilities as a collective group of different personalities with unique strengths.
The Importance of Personality Differences with Doing Chores
Some see the task at hand before they see the relationship. However, there are others who see the relationship first and then see the task. In other words, you may have a child that is naturally drawn to structure and doing chores and others that are more naturally focused on relationships and not as gifted at structure.
It is important to understand the strengths each personality brings to the home and their unique responses to a chore schedule and structure. God intentionally created each person uniquely, and we get to learn to adjust to and love one another as we learn to live and work side-by-side.
How Personality Types Connect with Doing Chores
Take this quick and fun personality quiz to get more insight into the four distinct personality categories we all tend to fall into. Although personality is more complex than these four categories, you can use this as a starting point.
Talkers love a social and sensory rich chore environment. They generally tend to love music while doing chores and would love doing them as a group. Typically, talkers make chores fun and to bring some of the most creative ideas for charts.
Leaders prefer to be the ones in charge and tend to voice their disagreement when they find a chore to be pointless. When engaged, leaders are more likely to create the momentum needed to conquer large tasks with multiple steps. Also, leaders cultivate a culture that follows through on activities.
Thinkers love structure, clarity, and consistency when parents develop house chores. Usually, thinkers are black and white. And they are the most likely of the personality types to complete chores without being asked. Thinkers can help create amazingly organized charts.
Peacemakers take their time with chores. Unfortunately, peacemakers can often procrastinate completing chores. Peacemakers are the most likely of the personality types to complete chores without complaining.
Examples of Everyday Chores
What are everyday house chores for kids to begin learning about as they mature and learn to serve? Let’s begin with a few of the most time-consuming daily chores for kids and families:
Cleaning the Kitchen
This area needs a full team effort. Give kids as young as 2 years old some opportunities to serve in the kitchen. Maybe you can challenge them to pick up crumbs off the floor or wipe down the cabinets. If you have leaders and thinkers, let them help with developing a plan for the daily demand of cleaning the kitchen.
This never-ending chore can also benefit from early instruction. Have your kids help you fold the clothes! Consider letting each one of your kids control some part of the laundry process. Maybe your older kids can help the younger ones learn how to fold a shirt or pair of pants. Assign the task of finding all the mismatched socks to your more energetic kids. Be creative in how you set your kids up for success with this chore.
Cleaning the Bathrooms
This is probably the grossest of the chores, but it’s necessary. Kids can first help alongside of you as they learn how to take care of the bathroom. If your kids share a bathroom, allow them to come up with a plan for how they will keep the space clean. You might even suggest that they decide how to best organize the bathroom too. If you have a thinker, consider asking them if they have any thoughts on how to strategize cleaning the bathroom.
Depending on your house, vacuuming might fluctuate between every other day or once a week. Have everyone provide ideas on how to consistently complete chores without having the vacuum just parked around the house. Consider combining this chore with music or a competition to see who can vacuum the most rooms in the house.
Having a clean house does not make your house a home. A key to all of this is grace toward one another as you learn to see chores as opportunities to serve one another in your home. The goal in sifting through the potential decision fatigue is a peaceful, fun, and connected home. Not a perfect, disconnected, museum-type home.
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