Training Children to do Chores

I remember my aunt tell me about a day when her husband took one of the boys to work out on the farm and left her with the other 8 children to clean the house.

She commenced to keep 8 children on task cleaning and was challenged to the max.  When her husband came in he said, “Well, you didn’t get much done and you had 8 workers.”  She replied,”Next time, why don’t you take the 8 children and I’ll take the one.”

What is the answer?  Is it having a smaller family?

No.  Giving your children a sibling is the greatest gift you ever give a child.

We just need better instruction.

Here are some tips with training Children:

Train children one on one.  Let others help with training such as siblings, grandma, Dad, neighbors, but if you don’t get anyone to help you, then you MUST TRAIN YOUR CHILDREN!

  1. Training children involves 3 steps:  Teach them, train them, and then give consequences.
  2. Teach them  – Teach them with WORDS.  They will be learning new vocabulary and need you to describe what you are doing.
  3. Train them – Show them with ACTIONS how to do the chore.
  4. Consequence – WATCH THEM do the job.  Give them a praise for what they did right and explain what they could do better next time.
  5. EXPLAIN rules and jobs in calm “one on one moments” or in weekly family meetings.
  6. Then PRACTICE the rules through role playing, etc.  It’s super fun to role play the wrong way and the right way to do a chore.  It always gets everybody laughing!  This is the time that it is okay to be long-winded and explain in cool, calm one on one moments or family meetings how the job should be done exactly.
  7. If it’s chore time and Mom is keeping everyone on task, then give ONLY short commands to children.  The longer you talk, the more they tune out.  Plus, they have a short attention span.
    For example say, “We don’t ask why.  I am your Mother.  I know what’s best for you.  Get your job done please.”
    “We don’t leave the kitchen until it’s clean.”
    “If you are whining, you need more sleep.”
    “Whoever is the best peacemaker will earn Dad time.”
  8. If the children aren’t obeying than the MOTIVATION isn’t great enough.  God uses positive and negative consequences so plan positive and negative consequences. What matters to your child?  Is it privileges, money, reading, friends, electronics, food, or free time?Our consequences are a star chart where you move up for obedience or being a peacemaker;  when you earn 4 good stars you get a dime.  Our negative consequences are when you earn 4 negative stars you get extra chores.  Our other consequence is if you don’t wake up and check in with Mom on time you lose the opportunity to play with friends that day.  It is a very motivating!  My 4 children just came and kissed me and checked in so they get friends today!  Yay!!!


    Put the chart on a clipboard in a plastic sheet protector. Then it’s easy to use a dry erase marker to mark their progress during the day.

Realize that you can either do life “Hard, Easy or Easy, Hard.”  Training children is doing life “Hard, Easy.”  At first, it’s hard.  It take more time, patience, and energy.  But later it’s easy, because they are self-reliant, independent, active youth that make your burden light by training your other children and making a difference in the world because they know how to work.

It will take incredible patience, passion, and perseverance to train your children but it will be worth it!  May the Lord bless you in your efforts.

Your friend,

Krystal Meldrum
The Queen Bee