Age Appropriate Chores for Young Children + Chore Chart

 
 Getting your kids to clean up after themselves is possibly an on-going battle at your house (it is at mine, anyway). Even my naturally orderly older kid won’t always clean up without being asked first, and my younger child simply doesn’t understand the need for a chore like making the bed (“I’m just going to sleep in it again anyway!” he objects.) Most days I pick my battles, and more often than not I end up running after them like their own personal maid. This book makes a pretty convincing argument to stop with the cleaning business altogether (the author advocates for simply cutting down on clutter and toys in the home in general and says that we need to be doing less nagging and handholding and more enjoying our kids). After all, we want our children to grow up to be independent and self-reliant. To do so, we must begin teaching them about responsibilities at an early age. That said, I also want to instill in my children respect for their surroundings and get them ready for life on their own.

By the time their bedrooms become a disaster area I’m often confused about where to start. My sons claim they don’t know how to clean or that they are overwhelmed and need help. Do I clean with them? Stand over them and direct them? Let them figure it out? The following list of age-appropriate chores was very helpful for me to set the tone for my kids. I don’t want to be asking too much too soon, but I do want to show them that chores are a necessary part of life and to help the family unit stay organized. I also set up this chore chart that would help them stay focused.

chore chart
Let me stress that all kids are different and have different attention spans. So, what is an easy chore for one at a certain age, may not be the case with other siblings. Keep a watchful eye out to ensure the kids are able to do the task appropriately. Kids chores are a great way to teach responsibility and help them see how much work goes into running a family. Those living the homestead life can have children help, as well.

Age 2-3

Individual chores

  • Pick up toys and put them in the toy box

Family chores

  • Dust (let’s be honest, you might have to do a but of a follow up after they’ve finished)
  • Put dirty laundry in the laundry basket
  • Fill a pet’s water and food dish (with supervision)

Homesteading chores

  • Gather eggs from chickens
  • Help pull weeds or harvest vegetables and fruits

 

Age 4-5

Individual chores

  • Get dressed on their own (to avoid zany clothing combinations I give my boys a few choices that all match well)
  • Make their bed
  • Put away shoes and backpacks after school

Family chores

  • Set the table
  • Clear the table (may require supervision with heavy plates)
  • Help prepare food
  • Help carry groceries
  • Sweep patios and walkways
  • Add laundry detergent to the washer and dryer sheets to the dryer
  • Match socks in the laundry
  • Be responsible for a pet’s food and water bowl
  • Hang up bathroom towels
  • Brush teeth with supervision

Homesteading chores

  • Gather eggs
  • Help plant seeds in pots or in the garden
  • Pick berries
  • Water garden
  • Help feed livestock
  • Milk goats with parental supervision

 

Age 6-7

Individual chores

  • Make their beds every day
  • Brush teeth
  • Comb hair
  • Choose the day’s outfit and get dressed without supervision
  • Write thank you notes

Family chores

  • Be responsible for a pet’s food, water and cleaning cages, cat’s litter box or walking the dog
  • Vacuuming
  • Put their laundry away
  • Make some of their own snacks (sandwiches, fruit bowls, etc.)
  • Unload the dishwasher

Homesteading chores

  • Help in garden (weeding, planting, watering, harvesting)
  • Feed livestock
  • Milk goats
  • Help clean out stalls and barns

Age 8-10

Individual chores

  • Take care of all personal hygiene
  • Keep bedroom clean
  • Wake up on their own using an alarm clock

Family chores

  • Clean the bathroom with supervision
  • Wash dishes/load dishwasher
  • Feed pets
  • Prepare a few easy meals on their own
  • Learn to use the washer and dryer on their own
  • Empty trash/take the trash can to the curb for pick up

Homesteading chores

  • Turn the compost
  • Help in garden
  • Feed livestock
  • Help clean out barns and change animal bedding

 

Age 11-13

Individual chores

  • Keep bedrooms tidy
  • Take care of personal hygiene, belongings and homework
  • Write invitations and thank you notes
  • Change bed linens and maintain clean towels in bathrooms

Family chores

  • Change light bulbs
  • Dust, vacuum, clean bathrooms and do dishes
  • Clean mirrors
  • Baby sit younger siblings (check age requirements in your state)
  • Prepare an occasional family meal (spaghetti or other simple dishes work best)

Homesteading chores

  • Feed and water livestock
  • Clean barn and stalls
  • Help load and unload hay and feed.
  • Make a more active role in garden
  • Assist and help younger siblings and direct them with chores that they have passed down.

Keeping these guidelines lets me know if I’m asking too much of my kids. It’s also helpful to see which areas I’ve been too lax on them! Good luck with your little helpers!

 

Pamela Bofferding is a native Texan who now lives with her husband and sons in New York City. She enjoys hiking, traveling, and playing with her dogs.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published June 30th, 2016
If you found this article useful, please Vote for Ready Nutrition as a top prepper web site.
share this article with others
related reading
featured today

Leave A Comment...
Ready Nutrition Home Page

Ready Nutrition Articles By Category
Looking for something specific on our site? Start your search in our list of articles by main category topic.