Do you think kids' chores are overrated or tough to manage? Read on! Chores can provide awesome sensory integration, brain motivation, family contribution, and a great workout for overall wellness. More than just a good sweat, chores can encourage and teach:

  • Motor planning (how do I sweep that dust into the pan?)
  • Eye-hand coordination
  • Patience
  • Hard work
  • Heavy work
  • Cooperation
  • Executive function skills
  • Responsibility.
  • Focus

Yet getting kids to do chores can really take some serious effort and planning skills on your part as well. For chores to be successful, they need to be consistently monitored, and age appropriate. Here are some of our favorite chores for kids of all ages and few tips to get them done!


  • Trash: Toddlers can move small garbage cans from one point to the next.
  • Wipe Down Surfaces: Give a toddler a wet cloth to wipe down a surface or move the dirt around!
  • Sweep: Toddlers can sweep with an age appropriate broom
  • Laundry: Have them put their dirty clothes into a bin
  • Toy Pick Up: Encourage your toddler to pick up toys when finished with playtime

Tips: Use a regulation cube and place photos of chores to be done on each side. Then toss the cube to see which chore pops up first.

Elementary School Age:

Same list as above and in addition:

  • Mop: Your elementary school age child can wet mop a floor
  • Garbage: Have your child collect the garbage from around the house, place into one bag and place on the curb or outside can.
  • Wash Dishes: Show your child how to rinse dishes and place into the dishwasher or wash by hand.
  • Set Table: Learning how to set the table can be mastered with just a little practice.

    Tips: Use a resistance band or foam roller to warm up muscles before doing chores to improve the brain-body connection and spatial awareness.


    Middle School Age and Up:

    Same list as above and in addition:

    • Meal Planning: This age is ready to execute with some guidance. A tween or teen can plan a basic meal, make a list and prepare it. Clean up should be part of the process.
    • Laundry: Now is the time to reduce your own laundry work and have your child learn to separate colors and do their own laundry, including putting it away.
    • Yard Work: Your middle school or high school student can learn to do basic yard work and, with supervision, even mow a lawn.

    Tips: Try using a wipe erase board or list to keep chores in a highly visible spot to improve executive function skills. Before doing chores, jumping up and down on a trampoline or using a swing can get the body ready to work and cooperate.

    Learning to do chores is not a one time-get it done skill. It takes persistence from parents and teachers and the realization that you may see 3 steps forward and 2 steps back. Over the long term, the results provide a more functional, contributing family member and future community member.