I’m Alissa Wilbur! Author and Parenting/Lifestyle Blogger at www.batblifestyle.com ~ I'm a mother, writer, crafter, designer and lover to a rocket scientist. I enjoy eating donuts, fashion, photography, kindness, espresso, reading happy books, making forts with my toddler on the living room floor, going on adventures and dancing around the kitchen.
February 27, 2014
When Harper was old enough to walk it was so exciting to introduce her to becoming a "big helper" around the house. Now that she's almost 3 years old, her chore list has grown tremendously and it's been so much fun teaching her how to be helpful and while also teaching her the importance of having responsibility! Growing up in a family where every Saturday morning was spent doing our chores so that we could spend the rest of the weekend with friends has taught me the importance of introducing this to Harper at young age. It's something that has stuck with me since and now that I'm a mother it's important that Harper too helps our when she can! With giving Harper her age appropriate chores she feels so incredibly proud and accomplished! While there are of course some chores she does better than others, it's still been such a great learning process! We've found that the chore list above is what works best for us at the moment and are excited to watch the list grow as Harper gets older and becomes more understanding!
Transfer laundry from washer to dryer + This was the first task that we gave Harper and it is still one of her favorites! Though I supervise all of her chores, this is something that I help her with the most. She's not quite tall enough to reach into the washer so I'll hand her the clothes to place into the dryer. This is definitely the most time consuming chore that Harper has so we take full advantage of this time together by making up songs about clothes and colors!
Wipe table before and after meals + This is such an easy task and it's one that Harper loves to do!
Put dirty clothes in hamper + After breakfast each morning and bath time each night Harper is responsible to take her dirty clothes to the hamper in her bedroom!
Sweep kitchen floor after lunch + We bought Harper the tiniest broom/dustpan when she was just old enough to walk and it's something that she is so proud of! She is in charge of sweeping up the mess under her table after lunch.
Pick up toys/books in bedroom + We spend most of our days in Harper's bedroom, which at the end of the day looks like a tornado paid us a visit! Her job while I'm making dinner or getting her bath ready is to clean up her toys and books!
Dusting + We like to dance around the house dusting everything in sight! She only gets the tiniest drop of wood polish but it's just enough for her, she thinks it's the greatest thing ever!
Help set the table + Along with this, Harper also picks out her plate/cup/silverware for each meal. She loves this so much and we enjoy seeing how great she has become at setting her own place at the table. We don't let her carry any of the heavy/glass dishes because she's not quite old enough yet!
Unload groceries + Harper loves helping put away groceries, mostly into the fridge because it's basically the only thing she can reach in the kitchen. Note: whatever you give her will most likely be going into the two bottom drawers of the fridge. ;-)
Water plants + When we have plants and flowers around the house Harper enjoys keeping them alive and well by helping me water them each day! We got the sweetest elephant watering can in the dollar bin at Target last year and we can't wait to bring it out again when the beautiful weather joins us! (did you hear that spring? hurry up!)
Wipe cabinets + Harper loves helping clean cabinets weekly so we decided to get her her very own spray bottle at our local Dollar Store! She's becoming so good at this. Sometimes we may even have a water fight before finishing up!
Sweep kitchen/bathrooms + I sweep our kitchen as needed during the day and I go over them one more time before giving Harper her bath each night. She'll pop her head into the laundry room and grab her broom before taking over! We sweep the bathrooms on the weekends so that another one of Harper's favorite chores to look forward to on Saturday morning!
Wipe windows + Harper isn't quite old enough to use Windex so she will use the same spray bottle that she uses to clean the cabinets with on the windows as well!
Fold blankets on bed + In the morning and after nap time each day Harper is in charge of folding her blankets and putting them at the edge of her bed. This is still taking a lot of practice but she loves the challenge and when she gets it remotely close she gets so excited! *insert squeeeeeal here*
Clean up bath toys + Before getting out of the bath each night we make sure that Harper picks up all of her bath toys and puts them into her bath-toy bin. She'd tell you that her favorite part about doing this is shaking them to get the water off and splashing everyone in a 10 foot radius! In our home it's impossible to end bath time without being soaked in water. You too?
Sort laundry by colors + After our clothes are finished drying we take them out and sort them by their colors! Harper LOVES doing this and I often catch her in her bedroom closet taking clothes out of her drawers just to sort the via colors. Haha!
You see? It's as easy at it looks! Teaching Harper responsibility has been so much fun. We reward her with gum-balls! We start each week with an empty mason jar and as she completes each task she receives a few gum-balls. We don't allow her to eat them so that allows us to re-use the gumballs every week! There are many different things you could use instead of gumballs though! The possibilities are endless! We had discussed if we should reward her for doing her chores and knowing that some people choose to do otherwise, we thought this would make it much more fun for Harper! If she has a few good weeks in a row of being a big helper we will take her to do something fun or let her watch a few extra minutes of Netflix on the weekend! We have enjoyed teaching Harper how to lend a hand around the house without making even more messes (usually) and though sometimes we don't have a chance to get to every single chore, it's still a blast to complete the few that we do get to! The older Harper becomes, the harder tasks she will receive! We found that it was easiest to start with only two chores when we first introduced Harper to her chore chart. It kept her interest and it was much easier to introduce more to her as the days went by! For older children it would be a great idea to go to your local dollar store and create a cleaning kit just for them! Spray bottle, wash clothes, dusting cloth, etc. Last but not least, MAKE IT FUN!