Piles of laundry, dishes stacking up, it all gets so overwhelming! The last thing you want to hear is your children complaining about helping with it all!
When you have a child or children with extra energy it can feel even more intimidating.
Where to start? What should you do to encourage them to help? How do you get some help!?
Create Routines that Include Everyone
Routines establish habits and children, especially those with extra energy thrive on routine, rhythms and positive feedback.
Make a list of chores you would like your children to help with, make it visual, (pictures always help) and let them choose. You can switch it up regularly to prevent frustration or boredom with the same tasks. Some kids like the consistency of their options, knowing what they are doing each time and others like some variety.
Check out these fun, different chore charts below..
2. Set up and Understand your Expectations
Break free from Perfectionism! When you children hear you telling them to do things "better" or "how you want it done" they hear they are not competent, and what's the point of trying? Let go of the control, give them the opportunity to learn, experiment and be gently along the way with them. There is more than one way to do things!
Consider giving them "responsibilities" vs "chores"..it's all in the words and how we feel about them. When discussing chores with your child refer to them as "responsibilities" and how you know they can handle such tasks instead of addressing them as chores. The words we use matter, they dictate the actions we take and the mindset we have.
3. Lead by Example
Show them how it's done! Children are visual learners. Before you tell them to "go clean the bathroom" you need to show them what that looks like. As adults, we forget how much our children are unsure of their abilities and need our guidance.
Don't overwhelm them with everything at once. Just like anything else, learning once skill at a time and allowing time for practice equals success. When you are modeling what you would like your child to do, demonstrate one skill at a time. This will prevent frustration and overwhelm in your child, thus providing incentive to keep trying until mastery.
4. Discuss ahead of time with your partner…
To Reward or not to reward? Decide ahead of time if you will be using some form of reward with you children. There are sticker charts, allowance, doing things together as a family after the chores are done..whatever you and your partner decided to do, make sure you are on the same page together!
5. Consistency is key!!
If you want to see success and change, consistency is your best friend! Having a regular routine with expectations in place will set everyone up for success with less nagging, reminding, frustration and overwhelm!
Now..for the part you've all been waiting for! What to do with those kiddos with extra energy!!
If you find yourself with a child with extra energy there are many chores that will benefit you and your family and help release extra energy and build their confidence and self-esteem!
Here is a non-exhaustive list of chores for those kids who seem to bounce everywhere they go!
Feeding and caring for a pet
Getting the mail & helping sort it
Pulling/pushing/carrying heavy laundry baskets
Bringing garbage and/or recycling to the curb (with supervision from parents if you have younger children or children who tend to wander or are impulsive)
Mopping (again, setting your expectations low or achievable)
Wiping down the table/counters
Scrubbing bathrooms with a sponge or brush
Cleaning baseboard trim
Cleaning the car
Dusting non breakables
Sweeping off the deck, the garage, sidewalk..
A Little Extra..
Some other fun things to encourage even the most stubborn kiddos..
Let them climb on things or do things they wouldn’t normally be allowed to do to keep it extra interesting and fun, but safe, during chore time
Assign a chore/task that is important to them, which makes it easier to remember to do
Set a timer and make it a “game” or “challenge”
Get out there and have some fun!
If you have questions, want to set up a call or need help implementing these strategies, let’s connect!