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What age should kids start doing dishes?

My 7 year old begs me, she wants to do the dishes to help me,i think she is too young.because i know there will be a big mess and i'm not patient enough with that, i mean if i let her start do i make her clean up her own mess? I know most kids dont ever want to do dishes, i guess i'm lucky there(for now)

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Asked by mackison74 at 3:37 AM on Jun. 19, 2008 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

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Answers (9)
  • let her help you with the dishes and if she happens to make a mess then show her how to clean it will help her get used to the chore idea and plus it will teach her a little responsibilityin the long run.

    Answer by alexisnoel at 3:50 AM on Jun. 19, 2008

  • if your little one is showing interest in helping try to encourage it & give lots of praise afterwards. do "baby steps" first. try having her just add the water & soap in the sink. or putting dishes in sink. she'll luv being included and being mommy's helper.

    Answer by oliveoyl214 at 3:56 AM on Jun. 19, 2008

  • LOL i say, as soon as they can! my son is 3 and he likes to "help" so I think by the time he has the dexterity to actually handle it on his own, I will let him. He helps me load and unload the dishwasher and hand wash pots and pans... I bet by the time he is 4-5 he will be able to "REALLY" help. Of course, I am in there at the same time wiping counters or whatever, but I let him "play wash" all the time so I dont see anything wrong with it

    Answer by LuminousMom at 4:44 AM on Jun. 19, 2008

  • I have been letting my 6 year old help with the dishes since she was about 4. I only let her to the plastic cups and plates... tupperware. She washes everything and then we do one big rinse. It does take patience and there is sometimes a mess (but hey, it's just water) =) It's teaching them about helping and responsibility... If she's willing to chip in, I say let her.

    Answer by madismom1130 at 11:03 AM on Jun. 19, 2008

  • my boys are 6&5 and they always asking to do the dishes. i let them do it. then i say here is a towel and clean up your mess. i also let them vacuum

    Answer by 6lilprinces at 11:58 AM on Jun. 19, 2008

  • Mine has been helping me since he was four. He stands on a chair. We started with simple things like utensils and cups. (No knives, no glass) I have switched to plastic plates and bowls so that he can do those now too. I do pans and we only use glass plates and glasses for company. I rinse so anything he doesn't quite get clean I put back in the water. He's six now and it still works pretty good. His smaller hands get into places a lot easier than mine.

    Answer by mnwintercritter at 10:02 PM on Jun. 19, 2008

  • My oldest son is 8 and last year I taught him how to do dishes. He can't wash the big heavy pots and pans and he doesn't wash the steak knives but he washes everything else. Let her help you, so what if they don't get perfectly clean or something gets broken?

    Answer by Bethsunshine at 8:37 AM on Jun. 21, 2008

  • First off do you have a dishwasher? Or do you wash by hand? My 6 and 8 yr old dd's both rinse off dishes, load the dishwasher, my 8 year old puts the soap in and turns it on, and they both unload it. I don't see any reason why you shouldn't let her. Wait too long and it will be nothing but an uphill battle. Now if your handwashing I can understand the concern. Then I would let her start out small, like just the silverware and you direct her on how to do it. That is key here, show her how it should be done. I had a mother who never showed me and expected me to just magically know...there was an awful lot of yelling and smacking when I was growing up. BTW, learn some patience....if she sees that you can be patient enough to show her, things will be much better for the both of you in the long run. Dishes can be replaced and messes can be cleaned up....don't let something so small create problems for the two of you in the future.

    Answer by SensualScents at 11:11 PM on Jun. 22, 2008

  • LOL, I would take advantage of her wanting to do the dishes, because when she gets older she won't want to do them. You will have to supervise her of course and don't put any knives or glasses in the dishwater.

    Answer by Sexymom75 at 4:32 PM on Jun. 29, 2008

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