Teaching our children to contribute to the family by helping around the home and doing chores is an important life lesson. As mothers who expect our children to do chores around the house we are helping them learn respect for the home and prepare for life outside the family home. Today I’m sharing a few easy chores for toddlers to help you get started teaching your little ones the value of a hard work and a cheerful spirit.
Toddlers learn by imitation and repetition. If your toddler is old enough to pull toys out of a bucket, he is old enough to do basic chores. As you browse this list of five chores toddlers can do remember to adapt them as you need to fit your family and your toddler’s abilities.
When my kids were little I found lots of ways to let them help and as they grew older, the jobs grew with them. Young children love to feel like they are helping and valuable lessons are learned through chores. The earlier you begin the better! I can still remember my kids fighting over who got to help me!
There are lots of ways your toddler can help you with chores around the house. Pay attention to their abilities and add more chores as their skills improve.
Proverbs 31 tells us that the virtuous woman looked well to the ways of her household. That does not mean she did everything herself! It means she managed her home well and that includes training her children to be helpful and to work hard. Begin training your child with these five easy chores for toddlers.
Five Chores for Toddlers
1. Wipe up spills
They know what an “uh-oh” is and they are starting to understand that an “uh-oh” usually needs to be cleaned up. Next time your toddler spills something that’s not hazardous (think broken glass, chemicals, etc.) teach them how to clean it up with you. It’s a straightforward task that lets your child know that when they make a mess they are expected to clean it up. The important thing to remember as you teach your toddler to clean is that you perfection comes with practice. Work alongside your toddler offering praise and advice and help.
related: Get a $10.00 credit toward your first purchase at Grove Collaborative. I buy all my household cleaners there!
2. Throw away diapers or training pants
Next time you’re changing the soiled britches of your toddler ask them to dispose of the diaper. This is also a great chore for older siblings to do once Mom has changed the diaper of their new brother or sister. It gives children a hands on way to help with the new baby.
3. Wet laundry into dryer
Teaching this chore will take more time than it will save you but it’s something your little one is capable of. You stand at the washer and hand wet clothes to your toddler who then puts them in the dryer. Make sure you have your kiddo wash his hands before he does this so your laundry actually stays clean. Your child will enjoy the camaraderie of doing this task with Mom or Dad. My toddlers loved helping me do the laundry!
4. Pick up toys
If they can get it out they can learn to put it back. You can make picking up toys simpler by keeping all toys in one large bin or basket together so your toddler doesn’t have to worry about sorting or organizing – only picking up. When my children were little we had different buckets for different toys – Legos,Lincoln Logs, blocks – but I only allowed one bucket out at a time. When they wanted a different toy to play with, we picked everything up first.
related: Q & A: Structuring the Day for a Toddler
5. Put dirty clothes in the hamper
This is as straightforward as asking your toddler to put their dirty diaper in the pail, or throwing away their own trash. Let them take responsibility for getting their clothes into the hamper. You’re teaching a good habit and saving yourself some extra work. After bath time, say something like, “Sarah, let’s put your dirty clothes in the hamper. Can you help me do that?”
You might also like:
- My Chores Punch Card
- 8 Printable Schedules for Your Toddler
- 3 Ways Your Toddler Can Help Around the House