5 Ways to Get Your Kids Motivated about Chores


If your children aren’t particularly excited about doing their chores, you aren’t alone. By and large, many parents struggle with motivating their kids to perform their chores. And, while many kids will never come to enjoy helping out around the house and yard, you can do a lot to motivate them. Here are five ways to get your kids motivated about chores.

  1. Try to Get Buy-In
Many children are unmotivated to perform their chores because they don’t understand why they have to do them. For some, the chores even come across as punishment for unspoken mistakes. Letting your children know they “why” behind the chores are will help them perform the chore.
Chores are a necessary part of running a successful household, and everyone benefits from them. Your children will be contributing to the health and happiness of the family, and their work specifically helps the household function.
Make sure to share with your children the bigger picture of why chores are necessary for a functioning and successful household. Help them to see how their specific work contributes. They still might push back, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t beginning to understand the bigger picture.

  1. Make Sure There Are Benefits
Speaking of buy-in, nothing gets children more excited about chores than providing a reward at the end. Now, this doesn’t mean you have to provide a direct reward, such as paying for every chore. Rather, the bigger picture is to ensure that your child sees benefits from doing their chores.
If you provide your child an allowance, tying this amount to execution of their chores can help motivate them. You can even try adding bonuses for extra chores performed, or for getting chores done ahead of schedule.
If your child isn’t motivated by an allowance, you can tie other benefits to their chores. Sometimes things as simple as staying up a little later than normal, or a treat at the store can motivate a child to perform their chores week in and week out.

Bonus: Make Sure They Are Equipped
Make sure your children are adequately equipped for the chores you want them to do. Consider purchasing a lightweight stick vacuum for your child so they can easily clean the carpet. Store the pet food in small containers so your child can easily maneuver them around. Make sure your child can easily perform the chores you want them to do.

  1. Make Sure They Know What Success Is
Do your children know exactly what it looks like to complete their chores properly? Have you accurately and specifically defined what this looks like to them?
As basic as it might seem, your children might not be motivated to do their chores because they don’t know how to. Or, they might know how to do the chore, but not know what completion looks like.
For example, if the chore is to vacuum the living room, what exactly does that entail? Just a quick vacuum of the floor, or do they need to vacuum the furniture and drapes as well? Do they need to pull furniture back and vacuum underneath, or is a quick pass suitable?
By accurately defining what it looks like for the chore to be successfully completed, your child will know exactly how to accomplish it. And chances are your child likes to accomplish what makes you happy!

  1. Make Sure to Compliment
Chores might seem basic and to-the-point, but children still need (and appreciate) compliments.
Find unique ways to compliment your child each and every time they successfully complete their chores. Specifically, compliment when they take motivation on their own accord and do their chores without your reminders.
Extend this complimentary attitude to everyone in the household, including your spouse. Model what this looks like to your child. Not only will this help them feel encouraged, but they will be more motivated to take initiative and do their chores next time.

  1. Know Your Child
Every child is different. Some are quiet and observant, while others are outgoing and exuberant. Knowing each of your children’s personalities, and what motivates them, can help you encourage them to execute their chores.
Don’t create a one-size-fits-all approach to chores. If one of your children is motivated by competition, create a game out of chores. If your child is a deep thinker, encourage them to find ways to improve the process. By knowing your child, and tying each chore to their strengths, they will feel far more empowered to perform the chore.

While chances are your children will never come to love chore time, there are a variety of ways that you can motivate them to contribute to the household. Good luck!  
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