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When did you start giving your children chores?

My daughter will soon be turning five, and I would like to start giving her some chores. My husband, thinks this is a bit early. Do you think this is too soon? I'm interested to know at what age most other parents start giving their kids chores? Also, what chores do you think would be appropriate for this age?

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Asked by lovemydivas at 9:50 AM on Jul. 18, 2009 in General Parenting

Level 8 (257 Credits)
Answers (13)
  • If you call cleaning there rooms a chore. They started that as soon as they were able to understand what picking up toys and putting them away meant. That was around 2, 3 years old.


    Answer by louise2 at 9:54 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • My son is 3 and he has chores. He puts away all of the silverware from the dishwasher (no knives, of course), he sweeps up the kitchen floor with a dust pan, he waters the house plants, he puts all his toys away before we leave or he goes to bed, he cleans his toys from the tub... Whatever else I think he's capable of doing during the day, he does. As he gets older I'll probably have him set the table, and help put the dishes in the sink when we're done eating, maybe take out the recyclables, make his bed, clean his room etc.
    I'd say if she's physically able to do it, there's no reason why she shouldn't help out. My DS loves the chance to be a "big boy" and help me with chores.

    Answer by motherofanaries at 9:55 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • I REALLY need to give my sons (2 and 3) chores. They love to set the table, help put away dishes, feed the dog, etc. I just need to make it a daily responsibility for them! I agree with the ones who said as soon as they are able to do a task! Mine were helping pick up toys as soon as they walked. Obviously they aren't vacuuming, washing dishes, or mowing the lawn at 2 years, but they are certainly capable of having a few responsibilities.

    Answer by micheledo at 10:04 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • my 3 yo is in charge of cleaning her room (at least pick up the toys) , puts her shoes away and hangs up her coats. She also loves helping "fold" laundry and put dishes away. MY other kids got more chores at 8.

    Answer by pagirl71 at 10:07 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • My oldest is 4 and he officially has his first chore chart. Ever since he could he's had to clean up his own messes, but this is different.

    His chores consist of 1) putting away his folded clothes, 2) cleaning his bathroom counter and sink, 3) picking up the living room and put everything where it belongs (him and his little brother do this - they haul a lot of their toys to the living room every day so they have to clean it up) and 4) setting the table.

    I think that it is important to teach responsibility even at such young ages. The earlier you start the easier it is. At my son's ages they are all too eager to help out around the house. My oldest was so proud of himself yesterday because not only did he put away his clothes but his little brothers and the towels that go in the linen closet.

    Answer by boizmom at 10:07 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • The activities he does as his "chores" have been part of his growing up - keeping his room clean, putting away his toys, putting his dirty clothes in the hamper/laundry room. We've only lately started calling them "chores" and he's asked for a few extras - so now he helps put away his clean clothes after I do the laundry and he helps put away the dishes in the dishwasher. He's 4 and has grown up understanding that helping around the house is what keeps a family running smoothly. If he wants to do something, he needs to do his part in keeping things tidy.

    Answer by JPsMommy605 at 10:08 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • My 3 year old picks up his toys, feeds and waters the rabbit (with my help of course) dries the dishes (the plastic ones) after i've washed them, helps fold laundry, and keeps his room clean. I still help him pick up his toys some of the time, but all the buckets and toy bins in his room have pictures of the objects that belong in them, so he cleans his room pretty much nightly by himself. I think 5 is plenty old enough to be doing chores, as long as those chores are age appropriate.

    Answer by ba13ygrl1987 at 11:24 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • My oldest were around 3. My youngest has had chores since she could take toys out of her bin herself. She got help with them until she was 2 1/2 and now at 3 cleans her room mostly by herself and is learning to put away her own folded clothes. She puts her dirty clothes in the hamper, puts her dirty dishes in the sink, puts away the clean kids dishes and silverware, dusts, keeps her toys picked up in the other rooms, etc.
    By 5 I expect her to fold her own laundry and put it away without help, sweep the kitchen, scrub the kitchen tables, empty the dishwasher without help, help the other kids with laundry (I just taught them how to do it the other day), help in the yard more, etc.

    Answer by justanotherjen at 11:55 AM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • It's not too early at all.
    Mine was about 2.5 when we started. At this young, the "chores" are things like picking up toys under my direction and with my help, brushing her teeth, helping to feed the pets. A flat refusal - "NO I dont' want to" - means no star on her chart. If she earns enough stars, she gets a treat on Sunday. She's 3 now and loves to count her stars to see if she has enough.

    Answer by kaycee14 at 12:02 PM on Jul. 18, 2009

  • We started once they were walking...putting their toys away, putting their dirty clothes in the about 2 they started taking their dirty dishes to the kitchen. My 5 year old now takes the trash out to the garbage can.

    Answer by TiccledBlue at 12:25 PM on Jul. 18, 2009

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