Age-appropriate chores for kids & teens to make them independent & successful (why is it necessary?)

Written by Avantika Bahuguna
Published: April 3, 2023

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An ex-journalist and editor, Avantika Bahuguna is a popular mom influencer based in Mumbai with a decade of experience in parenting and community building. She has hosted 100 plus parenting sessions online and otherwise and was a co-host on the digital parenting show Nine Months that was telecast across Network 18 digital platforms and Voot.

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Once upon a time Peter Parker aka Spiderman said- With great power comes great responsibility.

I would like to twist that a little and say that with great responsibility comes to a unique sense of power, especially if you want to raise independent, confident kids and teens who are getting ready to take on the world. 

Yes, that’s right. Well, while teenage might be a difficult age to discipline your kid, it actually might just be the right age to inculcate the right habits and discipline. Also, when it comes to your kids, the best way to ensure that things happen quickly and smoothly would be by making them incharge of stuff and teaching them how to be independent as a teenager through age-appropriate chores for kids. 

In fact, teenage is also the right age to introduce a variety of household chores for kids that gives them a sense of independence and prepares them for the tough years ahead as they grow up into young adults.

But how do you do that in a way that it’s easy to inculcate and doesn’t leave them cribbing and complaining, especially when they are in no mood to listen to you? The answer would be to gradually introduce them to age-appropriate chores that you think would excite them and that they would eventually love doing on their own.

Age-appropriate chores for kids & teens- Why are they necessary?

But first, let’s try and understand why age-appropriate chores are necessary for kids and teens. Here are a few strong reasons for your teen to be helping you around the house and outside:

1. They inculcate a strong sense of responsibility and discipline

There’s no doubt about the fact that giving your teens a chance to help with household chores is their first attempt to understand what being independent is all about. 

Owning up to tasks and taking accountability for the execution teaches them to be responsible and is a great way to inculcate discipline at a young age, which might be an issue that parents struggle with otherwise. 

2. A great way to bond with your teens

Raging hormones and mood swings in teens can often lead to friction in the family and as a parent there might be times that you feel you do not understand your teen at all. Well, household chores could be the answer to your questions and you can take this as a chance to develop a deeper, stronger bond with your teens giving them a space to talk and express themselves.

3.  Makes them self-reliant and independent

Doing household chores and taking responsibility for certain tasks at home and then completing them successfully would become a great sense of pride for your kids and you would see that they slowly learn how to be self-reliant and more responsible. 

Certain chores for kids that let them take charge of themselves like making their bed in the morning, tidying up their room, and planning their monthly budget for snacks, stationery etc teach them how to be independent as a teenager.

4. Helps build a strong sense of work ethic

Encouraging teens to do chores and over a period of time rewarding and recognizing their hard work and effort would build a great sense of work ethic at a young age. Your kids would not only start owning up to things, but they would also make sure that they do it and do it to the best of their ability. Wouldn’t this be a great lesson in understanding work ethics and being professional?

5. Teaches them a lot about time management and planning their day

Most parents struggle when it comes to teaching the art of time management to their kids and household chores could again be a solution to make a start in that direction. Planning their day better, listing down important tasks regularly and planning their routine for the day ahead would help them learn how to manage time more efficiently.

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Best age-appropriate chores for teens & kids

Here are a few household chores for kids that would help them to be more independent, self-reliant and disciplined.
1. Making their bed and tidying up their room
There are many ways to instill responsibility in kids, especially teens and one of the best ways, experts say, is by giving them tasks that involve them and their belongings.

We all know that starting your day better can not only boost your mood but also make it much more productive. Asking your teens to make their bed every day and tidying up their room would give a great start to their day and elevate their mood. It could also be a lesson in personal hygiene and grooming

2. Folding and hanging out the laundry
You can make your older kids incharge of the laundry once or twice a week and teach them to not only hang out the laundry once washed but also teach them the full cycle of washing the laundry and using a washing machine. You could start doing this under adult supervision first and once they learn it all, they could do it all by themselves.

For younger kids, folding the laundry and keeping their clothes in their cupboards could be a better option to teach them about patience and neatness.

3. Making meals for the family
Involving them in chores such as picking up veggies and fruits from the market and then eventually chopping them and making a meal out of it all and setting it out on the table is the perfect way to teach your kids about teamwork. They would also learn to respect food and understand the fact that it takes a lot to put out a meal on the table. 

4. Planning their monthly budget
Tasks for kids such as making them incharge of their own money and finances when it comes to buying stationery items, snacks, clothes that they like to buy and other small stuff that they require for school and otherwise can be a great lesson in making budgets and managing their own money at a young age.

5. Cleaning the house
Dusting, cleaning doors and windows, cleaning the refrigerator, folding and keeping the newspapers, magazines books properly are some other tasks for kids that can teach them how to be independent as a teen and embrace cleanliness at a young age.

A point here to note would be that all these tasks must be done under adult supervision first and once you know your child is ready to be alone, you can let them do it all by themselves. The other important thing would be to understand that while we as parents want our teens to be independent and self-reliant, do not force them to complete tasks and do not punish/scold them if they don’t. The idea is to teach them in a way that they love doing them and not otherwise.

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The views expressed are that of the expert alone.

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