I want my kids to grow up helping out around the house. And today is not the day to chat about why I feel strongly about that. Today is the day to tell you how you can have your 1 year old start to help out. Yes- even a one-year-old can be of a help to you.
Now before I get into this, let me remind you that this takes time, practice, & does not always work!
But, it’s about getting your 1 year old used to it & sometimes they will refuse or do it incorrectly, but that’s okay! Also, they learn by example! If they don’t see you cleaning, they won’t learn how themselves!
- Throw things away. My son recently discovered the trash can exists and I try to use this for his advantage by learning to throw trash away. Most of the time it results in him taking things out, throwing his pacifiers in, or playing with the trash… But, it’s good practice to get him used to throwing wrappers & such away. Teach to put things in and keep what’s in IN!
- Load the Dishwasher. I like to have Hudson put his plate, silverware, & bib into the dishwasher when he’s done with his meal. They’re all silicone or plastic, so if he throws it in kind of hard, it won’t break. He really enjoys when I open it and seeing in there, so this one is pretty easy! He just also likes taking other stuff out of there haha.
- Pick up toys. This one we’re really working at. Hud likes to put toys away but then enjoys dumping them all back out afterwards. I lead by example and praise him when he follows.
- Vacuuming. Now, you might be surprised by this one so let me explain. I quickly learned that my son was so interested by the vacuum anytime it would come out! I found him a wooden one, so anytime I vacuum, we get his out and he mimics what I do. Even though he’s not actually helping, he understands what it’s for! And my parents bought him a mini Dyson for Christmas that actually does suck up stuff that he will be so excited to open!! (by the time you’re reading this, he’ll already have opened it)
At this age, there’s not much else chore-wise that he’s able to help with, but this is a great start! Don’t hesitate to have your child help out just due to their age. They’re very smart and catch on quickly! And yes- it takes a ton of patience!! But, it’ll be worth it when they’re older and chores are a regular part of their life.
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