Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Little hands make good helpers!

I have this little 4 year old-- Katelyn-- who loves to help me with things around the house.  She asks me, approximately a million times per day, if there is anything she can help me with.  Last week she decided that she was going to start a part time job of making other peoples' beds.  She loves making her bed, Jocelyns (my 6 year), and her little brothers.  She has also asked me if she could go over to some of my friends' house and make their beds.  Transportation is a little issue...but maybe when she starts driving on her own.  :)  12 more years to go! 

She negotiated a deal with my husband that if she makes our bed every day she will get a nickel.  (BTW...as I am typing this post...she is sweeping the kitchen...she just got done wiping down the table)...anyways, then the other kids wanted to have a job to earn a nickel. We already expect the kids to help out around the house, so it took a few days for us to come up with what Jocelyn and Easton would be in charge of.  Easton is now in charge of sweeping the floor under the table after each meal and Jocelyn is in charge of straightening up our family room. 

I love having little helpers.  Not only does it make my job A LOT easier...it makes getting a task done in a quicker manner with so many hands.  I know a lot of people are afraid of asking their kids to help.  They don't want to listen to the possible whining that might start.  They want their kids to just be kids.  Things will go a lot faster if the mom/dad do everything.  But at what point will the kids learn how to help...should mom/dad wait on the kids hand and foot for the rest of their lives...or until they move out of the house?  Something to think about...  I know a lot of kids aren't expected to help around the house...but who is making most of the messes, or wearing most of the clothes...the list goes on. 

So at a young age, we have worked with our kids to teach them how to do things around the house.  Sometimes they are overly helpful and we have to take a step back to remind them they aren't ready to do certain things.  But what a help they have been.

No allowance needed (except the nickel for their special job)...just a pat on the back.   Literally my kids fight to get in line for a simple pat on the back.  Kind of funny to see.

My thought is that we live in such a world today of kids/young adults/adults expecting that life will be so easy. Everything will be given to them without having to work hard.   My goal is to instill a work ethic in my kids to have a cheerful, helpful heart for our home and for others.

Here is a list of things my kids currently are expected to help with...maybe this will give you a few ideas of how to get your kids involved with the house:
  • Dishes--loading and unloading
  • Clearing their plates off the table and scraping off scraps into the trash
  • Emptying trashes
  • Wiping down the kitchen table
  • Laundry: Sorting putting in the washer/drier, folding/sorting socks & clothes, and putting away
  • Dusting--that is one of their favorites
  • Bathrooms-- simple things like washing door knobs or sinks
  • Put away groceries
  • Cleaning up their toyrooms/bedrooms
  • Feeding and letting the dog out 
I am sure their are others...Here are a few pictures of the kids from the past few days...I didn't get a picture of Jocelyn.  She could live a day without helping, but she helps without complaint...she just doesn't go out of her way to ask if I need help....and yes my kids are allowed to just be kids:)

Weston getting in on the action:)
Easton vacuuming his room....he LOVES to vacuum.  He asks Sean every day when he gets home from work if he can vacuum.
Katelyn putting away groceries
Easton insisting on helping clean the bathroom

The boys working on the stairs

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