Growing up, I didn’t really have any chores to do. I am an only child and grew up with a single mom. I would do the dishes sometimes. I would clean my room hesitantly, but only when I was asked. Oh, and I took the trash out occasionally.
After my husband came into my life, we both knew and agreed that there was a certain way we were going to raise our kids. I also personally wanted them to be better than I was at cleaning up when I was a kid! (The problem now is cleaning up as an adult…but that’s another story!) There are some chores that kids can do that will teach them responsibility and independence.
So, now that I have kids of my own, they most definitely have chores. In my opinion, it is setting them up to not only clean up after themselves as they grow older, but it is showing them the value of hard work.
Here are some daily chores that big kids can do!
1. Cleaning the Kitchen
Plain and simple, our kids are responsible for cleaning up their own messes! In the kitchen is no different. The girls just recently learned how to do the dishes in the sink, which makes me SO excited! And it’s nice to have extra help!
The complete list for cleaning the kitchen:
- Wipe table
- Sweep floor
- Putting clean dishes away that are in the dishwasher
- Putting dirty dishes in the dishwasher
- Washing dishes by hand if needed
- Trash- Taking it out, putting new trash bag in
- Swiffering the floor
Now, I’m not super strict (though I probably should be because of the things they forget to pick up in there on a daily basis), but the majority of the things listed get done every day. I think the key to them cleaning up is being checked after. So, once they are done cleaning up, and they say they are done, check after them!
The nice thing about this is that it really does trickle down to the siblings. So, my 12-year-old and 6-year-old are putting their dishes in the sink to be washed, and my one and 3-year-old see that, and they put can put their dishes in the sink, too!
2. Cleaning the Bedroom
It took a LONG time to get to the point where the girl’s bedroom didn’t look like a total pigsty! Clothes everywhere, shoes where they don’t belong, toys where they don’t belong…I could go on and on! At times there are still endless amounts of clothes everywhere, and toys somehow make their way into the girl’s bedroom sometimes, but it’s a lot better than it used to be.
What helps here is that no toys are allowed in the bedroom. Every home and room is different, so if you are reading this and your child’s toys are in their bedroom, I am sure there’s a good place for them, and the key is just making sure they go back into where they belong!
The complete list for cleaning their bedroom:
- Folding clean clothes, putting them away
- Making beds
- Putting clothes/sheets/blankets in/taking clothes out of washer/dryer to be washed
- Removing all things that don’t belong
Our kids have a separate bathroom from my husband and me, or it probably wouldn’t get so bad. Even if you do share a bathroom with your kiddo, let them join in and clean up after showering, going to the bathroom, doing hair, etc.!
They will see you putting things away, and they will do it!
3. Cleaning the Bathroom
This is probably the worst area! I honestly don’t get how a bathroom can get SO DIRTY. Clothes everywhere. The kids are repeatedly leaving clothes in the bathroom after being told they need either hung up or folded up. There are always soap messes, and towels everywhere (that are NOT supposed to be there!), and I could go on!
The complete list for cleaning the bathroom:
- Clean sink
- Remove all clothes
- Making sure toilet paper is stocked
- Make sure a clean towel is available
- Clean toilet
- No trash on the floor
- Trash bag in the trash can
4. Cleaning the Play Area
This is one of the areas I’m most proud of! We are very blessed to have an area dedicated to toys and playing. We have a big tox for the majority of the toys, a few baskets for the soft toys, and containers for their kitchen accessories.
The main rule for this area: put things back where they belong.
That is literally it. I mean, that’s with all of these areas, honestly. The main thing that we try to teach our children when it comes to cleaning up is that everything has a place and needs to go back where it belongs.
As I mentioned before in #2, if you don’t have two separate areas, this tactic can still work for you. The main thing is that everything has a place. So even if there are toys in the bedroom, they can still be put away nicely, whether that’s in a toy box, basket, container, etc.!
5. Picking up the Random Things
This had to be on the list. It doesn’t matter if every room is clean, there are always shoes under the couch or in the kitchen. There are always jackets on the floor or on the stairs. There are always various toys here, there, and everywhere.
Our kids are expected to pick up behind themselves. So if you leave your shoes on the stairs, they need to go where the shoes go if you left a toy on the floor in the living room, that needs to be picked up.
It is the same principle here as all of these points. Everything has a place. So the random things lying around, whether that be shoes, toys, trash, or articles of clothing, all need to be put away!
Chores for Big Kids
It is never too late to start implementing chores that big kids can do! These do not have to be hard, and they do not have to be strict or daunting. They can be fun, and I strongly believe they teach skills and the value of hard work. As parents, we hope they grow up to be adults who take care of themselves and pick up after themselves!
What are some chores that your kids do daily?