At a glance
It can be hard for kids who learn and think differently to stick with chores.
You can help your child keep on top of household tasks.
Doing things around the house can boost a child's confidence.
Kids benefit from doing chores. But when kids learn and think differently, getting them to keep up with chores regularly and on time can be tough. These tips can help your child complete household tasks more easily.
1. Create a chore chart.
When younger kids have trouble remembering their chores, a chore chart can really help. Write out the chart on a piece of paper or buy one at a craft or office supply store. Give your child fun stickers to put on the chart when a task is completed. Kids often feel a sense of pride and accomplishment when they see all of their chores checked off.
2. Set a schedule.
Most kids who learn and think differently do well with structure. It can help your child if you keep a consistent schedule and stick to a routine. For example, your child can take the trash out on Monday, and on Tuesday help with the laundry. Or if you do all household chores on the weekend, do them in the same order each time—grocery shopping first, followed by laundry, then vacuuming and sweeping, for example.
3. Make a reward system.
Your child may feel more pumped-up to do chores if there’s something to look forward to. As a reward, you can plan a fun activity like going to the playground or to a movie when everyone’s chores are done. Older kids might receive an allowance or earn extra money for chores. Or they might only earn money if they take on harder chores like pulling weeds, helping make dinner, or mowing the lawn.
4. Encourage your child to stick with it.
Kids who struggle to stay focused can feel discouraged when they don’t get through household chores easily. Sometimes they might start a chore but not finish it. Instead of letting your kid throw in the towel or taking the project on yourself, encourage your child to keep going. Try saying something like, “Let’s take a break, and then you can finish putting away the laundry. Once it’s all put away, you can still go to your friend’s house.” It’s important to make sure the chores are a good fit for your child, and that your child can complete them.
5. Stay positive about chores.
Having chores can be a positive experience for kids. It’s best if chores are simply part of what your child is expected to do as a member of the family. It’s also important to praise kids for doing them. Avoid assigning extra work as a punishment. It can cause kids to think chores are a negative thing. Your child might resist doing them altogether.
Helping kids stay on top of chores teaches responsibility. It can also help improve their self-esteem. When kids get positive reactions from family and caregivers for their efforts, it feels like an instant reward.
Chores can be a positive, rewarding experience for kids who learn and think differently.
With some extra motivation, your child can stick to their list of chores.
Keeping up with chores gives your child a sense of responsibility and boosts self-esteem.
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About the author
About the author
Erica Patino is an online writer and editor who specializes in health and wellness content.
Laura Tagliareni, PhD is a pediatric neuropsychologist in New York City and a clinical instructor at NYU Langone Medical Center.