My Kids Are Not My Servants | Giftie Etcetera: My Kids Are Not My Servants

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

My Kids Are Not My Servants

My kids are not my servants.  Sucky, right?  I mean, what's the point of having kids if I can't sit around all day, having them cook and clean and bring me stuff?  :)  Maybe Cinderella's stepwitch had things right.  I do have them rub my feet every now and then, after all.

Seriously, though, even if kids are not your servants, they need to learn to clean up.  As soon as my kids could throw a ball into a basket, I started having them put toys in containers instead of me.  The purpose was not so that I would not have to do work.  Honestly, it takes more effort to convince an 18 month old to put a ball in a basket (and not take it out again) than it does to just pick up yourself.  But my job, as a mom, is to teach my kids to SURVIVE ON THEIR OWN.  That's right.  They need to know how to sweep the floor, cook dinner,  do dishes and laundry, and everything else, not for my convenience, but for theirs.

A key consideration in teaching my boys to do chores is that I struggle every day to do chores.  I have to make myself do the laundry or the dishes.  I want it to be natural and easy for them.  I don't want them to struggle like me.

So the 3 year old does laundry to the hamper, from the washer to the dryer, and sorts it into his dresser.  He straightens the living room and puts away his own toys.  The 6 year old unloads the dishes and replaces the DVDs where they belong and makes his own bed.  They empty and reline the trash cans.  They are both learning little bits about cooking.

It's not easy.  It's way more work than just doing it for them.  But it's the right thing to do.


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