Chores for kids…they’re great for fostering independence, promoting a sense of responsibility, and making kids feel like capable members of a household.
But what if we told you that chores for kids are also amazing for promoting all kinds of developmental skills? Yep, now you have more reason than ever to put those kiddos to work!
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Chores for Improving Strength and Proprioception in Kids
Proprioception is the way joints and muscles send messages to the brain to help coordinate movement. Proprioception also allows us to regulate the force of our movements. As kids move against an opposing force, they strengthen their proprioceptive systems. This kind of movement is also great for all over strengthening.
Help kids improve proprioception and strength with chores that involve lifting, pulling, and movement against resistance:
-Taking out the garbage
-Washing the floor (squeezing out a mop or sponge, scrubbing the floor)
-Loading the washer and dryer with clothes
-Raking, shoveling, pulling weeds
-Taking sheets, blankets, and pillowcases off beds to be washed
Chores for Promoting Bilateral Coordination in Kids
Bilateral coordination refers to how we use both sides of our bodies together smoothly. From doing jumping jacks to catching a ball with two hands to buttoning a shirt, this is an important skill for all kids!
Help kids work on bilateral coordination skills with chores that involve using the right and left hands together:
-Sweeping the floor
-Cooking (especially stirring and pouring tasks)
Chores for Promoting Midline Crossing in Kids
Crossing the midline means spontaneously using a body part (arm/hand or leg/foot) on the opposite side of the body to complete a task. Being able to cross midline during movement activities is an important precursor for establishing hand dominance and other motor skills.
Help kids work on crossing midline with chores that involve reaching across the body:
-Dusting/wiping down tables or counters
-Sweeping and mopping
-Washing the car
-Raking or shoveling
Chores for Promoting Fine Motor Skills and Hand Strength in Kids
Fine motor skills refer to small muscle movements in the fingers and hands, including finger isolation, in-hand manipulation and more! Fine motor skills and hand strength give kids the ability to grasp and manipulate objects – so important for school activities and self-care tasks!
Help kids work on fine motor skills and hand strength with chores that require pinching, pulling, squeezing, and grasping:
-Washing anything using a sponge or cloth that needs to be squeezed out (dishes, floor, windows, car)
-Watering plants with a spray bottle
-Hanging laundry using wooden clothespins
Chores for Promoting Visual and Cognitive Skills in Kids
Kids rely on visual motor integration and visual perceptual skills to coordinate their movements and to make sense of what they see. Visual motor integration and visual perception are closely related to cognitive skills like memory, problem-solving, and sequencing.
Help kids work on visual and cognitive skills by encouraging them to do chores that involve sorting, organization, and multi-step tasks.
-Following a recipe
-Making and packing snacks/lunches for school
-Putting away groceries
-Unloading the dishwasher
-Setting the table
-Putting away laundry, matching socks
-Tidying up and sorting toys and other objects
-Picking out clothes
Do your kids help out around the house? Do they have any favorite chores? We’d love to add to our list!
Share with us in the comments below!
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