Kids Chores By Age

Doing chores is good for kids because it helps them feel like they are an important helper in the family. It helps them feel capable, according to this Harvard Medical study, which also says that doing chores is also a strong predictor of a child’s future success. Here are some ideas for chores for kids by their age.

Maybe I’m just lucky because my kids LOVE when I give them little jobs to do (emphasis on little…!).They literally jump up and down when I get two wet washcloths and announce, “who wants to wash the floor!?” And then they run around with their little washcloths on the floor for about four minutes, “washing” the floor.

The trick to getting kids to do chores is not to force them, but to make it fun.

When my kids have completed some chores, I always reward them. When they were younger (under 5) I gave them a little candy or a coin for doing a good job, or sometimes they would have a chart that they got to mark, which they loved. Now that they are older, I cater the reward to their interests. They love Minecraft so now the reward is a small contribution, usually 25 cents, to their “Minecraft fund” which allows them to eventually buy new worlds in their game. Basically you have to reward them with something that has understandable value to them.

But Even Chores For Toddlers?

You and I both know that it would be unreasonable to expect a toddler to “help out around the house” in any real sense! But you do want to teach kids from an early age that helping parents and siblings with cleaning up is a positive experience and certainly can be fun as well.

When my mother-in-law saw how my kids love to do their chores, she suggested the “clean out the car” idea. It’s a super easy chore and really it’s not even a real chore… all you do is this:

When you get home from going somewhere in the car, you tell the kids, “Okay, let’s see who can pick up FIVE pieces of trash!”

Even a two year old knows what trash is and they’ll be more than happy to show you what a good helper they are. It gives them a sense of pride.

Our job as parents isn’t merely keeping the house cleaned up so everyone can enjoy themselves. It’s much more important for us to teach our kids how to live once they become adults.

So, with that said, here are some general guidelines for kids chores by age, which you should adjust according to your own child’s capabilities and your goals as a family. This is not a “task list” for kids, it’s more of a general list of “things that kids CAN usually help with by a certain age.”

Suggested Kids Chores By Age

Age 2-3

Pick up toys
Throw away trash
Put clothes in the hamper
Wipe baseboards
Clean out the car

Age 4-6

All previous chores
Clean their room
Make their bed
Set table
Clean up their dishes
Wipe tables
Feed and water pets
Put laundry away
Help put groceries away
Empty small trashbins
Water Plants / Flowers

Age 7-10

All previous chores
Fold laundry
Put laundry away
Meal prep
Wipe down bathroom
Take out trash
Pull weeds
Walk dog
Clean up after dog
Load dishwasher
Empty dishwasher

Age 11-15

All previous chores
Prepare a full meal
Tend to garden
Snow removal
Help with siblings
Their own laundry

Age 16+

All previous chores
Help with errands
Help transport siblings
All lawn care

Printable Kids Chores By Age Chart

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