There are 7 super easy, educational toddler chores my 2-year-old does almost every day ever since he started to walk. Surely, those 7 tasks take sometimes lots longer when he helps out. And the quality of the work done is sometimes a toddler quality, if he finishes it at all, but hey! I am amazingly thankful for him showing appreciation willingness to work, to learn and to help out. And additionally those 7 toddler chores are a great way for him to practice his fine motor, gross motor skills, language and early math skills.
For me as an adult, those 7 task might seem like bothersome chores, but for him they are real, fun, and exiting activities. This real work helps him build his confidence. In fact, he knows that he is a real helpful part of our family life.
How to get your little one to do toddler chores?
If you are wondering how do I get him to help out, in fact I don’t do anything special about it, besides following our daily routine and he wants to be part of it.
When your child is a little bit older, around 30-36 months, you can start using a visual toddler schedule. In this way, they see how their days are structured and follow the routine that you create for them.
Otherwise as long as they are very young, simply do those things you want them to do every day and they will join to help, when they see you doing them.
I rarely ask my child for help and I rarely push him to do anything (besides brushing teeth and washing his hair).
Importantly, I always thank him for his help and we enjoy together the fruits of our work – delicious meals and cosy and almost tidy home. I remind him of that and he seems to understand. So, thank you Aiden for being a such good helper.
In fact, I never offer him any other reward when he helps out, just because I do not want to send out wrong messages and disturb his motivation. We want to learn to help from kindness, not from expecting something in return. Additionally, we want to learn that we are responsible for ourselves and our environment. Like all learning, it does take practice and patience.
I’ve added however golden stars to our visual daily schedule, so he can assess how he did during the day.
And here they are. Drumroll, please
7 toddler chores my 2-year-old does every day
- Meal Prep & cooking
- Cleaning Mirrors and Windows
- Dusting and wiping
- Unload the dishwasher
- Vacuum cleaning
- Helping with laundry
- Putting his toys away
1. Meal Prep & Cooking
Cooking is an essential life skill. Helping out from early on, improves not only the fine motor skills, but also the social skills. Moreover, children can learn about making healthy food choices from the very beginning. Additionally, you can practice together many new and useful words, and easily turn cooking into a sensory or math activity.
2. Cleaning Mirrors and Windows
Babies and toddlers love mirrors. We put a mirror in our playroom from day one. Mirror play is one of the best ways for a young child to develop self-recognition. Specifically, there are multiple components that play into self-recognition, including self-identification (recognizing their own face, body, etc.), body awareness, and spatial development. Furthermore, mirror play encourages and fosters language growth. Additionally, mirrors can help young children develop emotionally as they have more opportunity to witness their own expressions throughout the day. Read more about the benefits of mirror play here.
No wonder, that our little one seems to be obsessed with cleaning the mirrors and windows. With growing up, only his tools become more sophisticated.
3. Dusting and Wiping
Dusting and wiping improves hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills and improves concentration.
4. Unload Dishwasher
Simple activity as helping out to put away cutlery and plates improves gross motor skills, fine motor skills and concentration.
5. Vacuum cleaning
Beside the fact, that Aiden was afraid of iRobot and was either running away or caring it around and trying to hide it, he likes manual vacuum cleaning a lot. And he does vacuum cleaning ever since he started to walk. It improves balance, gross motor skills and fine motor skills.
6. Helping with laundry
Helping with laundry can be easily turned into a math and language activity. You can ask your toddler to sort the laundry according colours, count the pieces together, learning new words, fold and sort the clean one.
7. Putting toys away
I am a big believer in less toys, but my husband and my relatives seem to disagree. So sadly, sometimes I feel we are swimming in toys. Donating toys, toys rotation and other strategies help for a while, but then again someone brings again something. Need to figure out a better strategy for the long term.
Aiden does mostly a good job of putting his toys back and that’s whats counts. Putting back for example his big animal toys in the big basket, is always turned into a language and math activity. He names his animal toys one by one and then he counts them.
Free Printable Visual Daily Toddler Schedule
Download a non-editable visual daily schedule free printable here.
Montessori Practical Life
Interested in more practical life activities? The genius of the Practical Life exercises was appreciated by Dr. Maria Montessori more than a century ago. And despite the fast-paced and rapidly changing world, those insights are still valid and very helpful for us as parents.
Check out also those 19 things your toddler should do every day.