As a single busy mom with a 3 ½ year old my schedule is full. I juggle all the responsibilities of the home, including housekeeping, grocery shopping, finances, gardening, and keeping my little girl smiling while trying to fit in time to put up my feet and relax with a good book and a cup of joe.
One challenge I face as a single mother is doing it all alone. To my pleasant surprise I have found a helper, who is enthusiastic and a great worker! It is not Merry Maids, no it is Anya my daughter! I have discovered that she is more than willing to help me around the house, and she is really a great help! If you have preschoolers that are home with you during the day or even on the weekend my advice is to get them involved. Kids love feeling useful and when at that young age you are less likely to hear the complaining that you would from a teenager.
Ideas to get your preschool child involved in the household chores:
Although laundry may be our Achilles’ hill, little ones love laundry. On laundry day have your child help you separate the clothes by color. This is a great way to teach them about separating and colors. Once you pour the detergent let them dump it in the washer. When the clothes are finished, take them out and hand them the smaller items of clothes to throw in the dryer. When they are dry let them put them in the bushel. You can even let them put their clothes in their dresser under your supervision.
You may not be able to give them the furniture polish, but you can give them a damp cloth and let them wipe railings, reachable window sills, and even baseboards.
Cleaning Their Room
I firmly believe that children will accomplish what you expect of them. If you are always picking up their room, then you can be certain when they are a teenager this trend will continue. Start with something simple such as organizing their toys. For example, my daughter has many organizational boxes; however there are four that she has easy access to since she plays with these toys most frequently. When the toys are out, she is responsible for putting the dolls in the doll box, the doll accessories in the accessory box, the crafts in the craft box, and so on. Again, this is great for practicing sorting, learning about organizing, and she gets to enjoy playtime because she can easily locate her toys.
Children love playing outdoors, so this is the opportune time to have them to help around the yard. With fall approaching and the leaves falling you will certainly need their help. Buy some age appropriate garden tools, such as rakes and gloves. Get out there and rake the leaves with the help of your little one. Make a game of it and collect interesting leaves or acorns. Afterward, sit together and enjoy a book and a treat after all their hard work.
There are so many creative ways to get your children involved in the household chores. All chores should be age and time appropriate, but with the right encouragement this is a great way to introduce them to responsibility, working together as a family, and to set good patterns for when they get older. Doing chores together is also a wonderful way to sneak in some quality bonding time. Get creative and have your kids at all ages participate in making your home a sanctuary for the whole family.
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