Don’t you just wish your kids would help around the house with smiles on their faces and a spring in their steps?  But for many of us, getting  our children to participate in household jobs is often a battle, and one that we may give up because it’s just easier to do things ourselves.

Here are 3 reasons why it’s important to teach children to become contributing members of the family….even when they push back.

1.  Chores build self-esteem and a “can-do” spirit, and connects kids (and teens) to their families.

2.  Chores teach important life skills.

3.  Shared work means more time for everyone in the family to enjoy together.

Years ago when I was teaching a parenting class about engaging children’s cooperation, I asked the participants to describe what they meant by cooperation.  After listening intently, one of the group members moved to the edge of her chair as she eagerly began to speak.  “I just realized that mychild is cooperating. But what I wanted was happy cooperation!”

So whether you are getting happy cooperation – or cooperation with attitude – know that making sure that children take an active role in the household  is worth the effort!

To learn more about kids and chores, including age-appropriate jobs, check out Elizabeth Crary‘s book, Children and Chores,, or stop by Weiss Pediatric Care for our latest handout.