As parents, there are so many important life lessons that we need to ensure get passed along to our children—lessons about values, morals, and what is important in life. One such lesson is that of responsibility, and how, as a family, we work together as a team and help one another. This is a crucial lesson for children to learn and understand as they then grow up to be kind, empathetic, contributing members of society. These lessons start at home.
The great part about it is that children love helping with grown-up stuff! They want to learn how to do things, they want to feel important and needed, and they love to mimic their parents. Now is the time to get them used to helping out around the house. Here are 10 tasks that you can give your preschooler to help teach them about responsibility.
10 Make Their Bed
This is a rather fun chore for kids to do, and they can learn how to do this at a fairly young age. You can keep it fairly simple by using a duvet cover rather than a whole sheet set so that it's just one big blanket they need to pull up. Then, show them how to tidy their pillows so they can do it too.
This is an important first step toward teaching them how to care for their spaces and to take pride in their bedroom. Bedrooms are safe havens for children, and by making their bed and being responsible for keeping their rooms tidy, they have a special role in creating that safe space for themselves.
9 Feed The Pet
Pets are such a wonderful way to teach so many life skills to your preschooler! Kindness, gentleness, compassion, and responsibility, just to name a few. Teaching your child how to help care for the family pet is a great task for them to be in charge of. Perhaps not all of the tasks associated with the pet, but they could be in charge of feeding them each day.
Whether it is a dog, cat, hamster, or fish, caring for an animal is such an important responsibility for children to experience. Loving a pet, caring for it, ensuring its happiness, and eventually dealing with the grief of losing it are all crucial life lessons for your child.
8 Put Toys Away
This is an important lesson because it teaches an important life skill along with responsibility: how to not annoy their spouse or friends when they're older! It's our responsibility to ensure that we have raised children who know how to clean up after themselves. Do not raise a slob! They will then turn into a spouse who is a slob, and the bitter cycle continues!
Messy spouses aside, teaching your little one how to put away their toys at the end of the day teaches them to be responsible for their things. It contributes to them creating that safe haven in their bedroom as well, as having their things organized creates that sense of calm.
Dusting is one of those chores that kids tend to love. You get to use colorful cloths, feather dusters, or cool extending wands. Kids love this task and usually do a pretty good job at it, too. Give them a neat tool to use and they'll be on their way.
Because this chore is pretty easy to do and does not require much assistance, your child can do this independently, which really increases their feelings of pride and accomplishment. They will feel happy that they have contributed and helped you around the house without you needing to assist them with it.
6 Wash Windows Within Reach
Who doesn't love a spray bottle? Give your child a spray bottle with diluted, chemical-free cleaner (2 cups of water with 2 TBSP vinegar and a few drops of preferred essential oil) and a window cloth, and let them get all their grubby handprints off the sliding doors!
Kids love this job because it involves spraying stuff, which is always so much fun. It is also a great opportunity for them to see up close their fingerprints on the windows. It won't get rid of them all, but they will be a bit more aware next time they're touching their nice, clean window!
5 Sweep Floors
Again, any chore that involves a fun tool will always be appealing to preschoolers. Give them one of those mops with the little spray nozzle, fill it with some warm water and a few TBSP of vinegar, and let them polish up those kitchen floors! Kids love to be able to try out adult tools, and it makes doing a chore that much more engaging.
Taking part in the cleaning of the house is an important lessons in responsibility because it shows how every family member needs to contribute in order for the household to continue running smoothly. When children are raised with that type of thinking and those kinds of expectations, they develop their sense of responsibility early on in life and understand the importance of helping others.
4 Help Sort Laundry
Teaching your child how to sort laundry is a great math activity for them! Show them how you sort your laundry: teach them about light colors and dark colors, whites and towels. Have them help you sort the laundry and discuss the different colors you come across.
This is a great task for your child to participate in, even if they are just helping you to sort the laundry. As they get older, they will become more independent, and eventually, they will be able to do their own laundry. It all starts with simple chores at a young age that are kept fun and relatively easy while they develop their new skills.
3 Set & Clear Table
Setting the table is one of those chores that really emphasizes the family bond; putting out the cutlery and plates while the parents are cooking the meal. Often if they are setting the table, it can be assumed that the majority of family members will be sitting down together to eat.
Giving your child the responsibility of helping to prepare the family meal gives them a very important role, and it emphasizes their place in the family. This is something that all children crave: to always know that they are valued members of the family.
2 Water Flowers
This is such a great job for kids to do! They love to play with water, and they are often fascinated with plants and how they grow. Giving them the responsibility of watering some of your flowers is an excellent way to teach them how to care for something. By watering and caring for the flowers, they see the results of it in the beautiful blooms.
On the other hand, if they forget to water the flowers and the flowers die, they learn an important lesson in responsibility and what happens when we neglect to do our jobs.
1 Bring In The Mail Or Newspaper
Kids are always intrigued by the arrival of mail to their home. Putting them in charge of getting the mail or bringing in the newspaper gives them a chance to be a part of the neat little mystery of mail delivery. If you get a daily or weekly newspaper, let your child be the one to collect it each time.
Talk to your child about the mail and what arrives, and let them begin to understand some of how that all works. Give them the occasional piece of junk mail to open and discover—that always adds some fun to it as well!