“I’ve cleaned my room, vacuumed the car and put out the bins. Is there anything else you would like me to do?” Is this what you hear from your son on a daily basis? If so, you are winning the battle of wills. More often than not however, the response we hear is, “I’ll do it later” or “do I have to?”
Children do not like doing chores for much the same reason we don’t like doing them – they’re not very exciting or stimulating. So why should we continue to fight this battle?
Household chores are a part of daily life and by encouraging our children to participate in completing them, we are assisting them to develop emotionally, physically and socially. Here are five ways household chores develop responsibility and worth for children.
1. Completing chores builds self-esteem
By completing a set of chores, your son can feel proud of his achievement. He has successfully completed a task on his own – a task that will not only benefit him but others too. This gives him a feeling of self-worth and develops self-esteem at the same time.
2. Your son contributes to family life
When your son completes his daily chores, he is contributing to the successful running of the family home. By doing so, he will develop a sense of responsibility, knowing that his contribution makes a difference and is appreciated by those around him.
3. He will develop a sense of independence
By completing household chores, your son is showing that he is competent and has the ability to look after himself. As mentioned earlier, daily chores are a part of daily life, something we all need to learn in order to live independently. This may be a long way off, but it is rewarding for your son to know that he could do it, if need be.
4. Completing chores builds team work skills
In your family home, your son is part of the ‘family team.’ By completing chores, your son contributes to the team and feels valued as part of the team.
5. Your son will develop discipline and respect
By listening to and completing tasks you have set, your son will be showing respect for you and the family. It is incredibly important that our children learn how to respect others and the first place this is learned is in the family home. Show your son how to respect others by modelling the behaviour you expect from him. If you are asked to complete a task around the home, do so willingly. When your son witnesses this, it is easier for you to ask for the same level of respect from him. Completing household tasks will teach your son discipline in committing to the task and completing it on a regular basis.
If you’re having trouble encouraging your son to complete his chores, tell him why you think household chores develop responsibility and a feeling of self-worth. You may also like to try a few of these tricks to make housework more fun:
- Add music to the mix
- Make it a game … Ready, Set, Go … how quickly can you move?
- Challenge them – boys love a good competition
- Mix up the tasks – organise the tool box, clean the windows, mow the lawn.
Trinity’s Field Studies Centre takes boys out of their urban environment and provides them the opportunity for growth and innovation in various academic disciplines including Geography, Science, Visual Arts, History, and Sport. At the Centre the boys are also tasked with chores, fostering independence. This gives boys an appreciation for their home life and provides them with essential skills they can take home and into adulthood. Academic focus afforded by the Centre provides unique opportunities to foster the development of boys into men, allowing them to turn potential into their future reality.
To learn more about the Trinity difference, and our Field Studies Centre, download our Field Studies Centre ebook: