4. Be patient. There will be some days they get distracted. There will be some days you may have to go over what they did a little later.
5. Don't be afraid to give them a hard task. Any educator will tell you that if you raise the bar high, kids will surprise you on how well they work toward and achieve that goal.
6. I recommend you assign 2 or 3 daily chores (make bed, put clothes in dirty basket, etc) and 1 major chore every day.
6. Finally: reward, reward, reward. Use verbal rewarding, physical rewarding (hug or a high five), and "prize" rewarding. It doesn't always have to be money. For example, if they do one chore a day every day, they can choose a movie for Saturday night.
Chores for 2-3 Year Olds:
- Make up bed
- Put all toys around house in proper places
- Set the table
- Help wash dishes
Chores for 3-8 Year Olds:
- Deep Dusting (window blinds, corners, lamps, on top of knick knacks around house)
- Clean bathroom (toilet, sink, counters, bath tub). Keep in mind this age range is pretty broad. Use this one at your discretion. I would not necessarily ask a 3 year old to scrub the toilet, but wiping down the counter and sink are pretty reasonable.
- Washing windows. This is a good time to invest in some "Green" window cleaner. Don't forget to remind, each time, to not spray in his face, mouth, or on others.
- Wipe baseboards.
- Clean walls and doors. . This one is pretty easy. Get one of the scrubbers and have your child wipe off all hand prints, scuff marks, etc around the main rooms and hallway. If you have him clean the doors, show him the dirt around the door handle so he knows what to look for.
- Sweep, mop, vacuum. (Again, take in the age before assigning this, but you might be surprised at how well your 3 year old can sweep)
- Folding laundry
- Collecting the trash (even taking it out for the older kids)
- Cleaning the back yard. (Put away the toys that are for the yard, sweeping the porch, etc)
- Helping/Doing the dishes
With their help, you will have a decently clean house every day! Not only will you not have to do it yourself, but you can teach your children responsibility and the pleasure of being rewarded for doing what is right. Your child should not be expected to clean all the time, but should be expected to contribute to helping keep the house presentable. With this list, you can rotate chores (Monday is Kitchen day, so everyone is going to clean a certain part of the kitchen that day) or give them an option of 2 or 3 chores. That way they do not feel forced to do something. You may be surprised on what your child may decide and how willing he is to do his part. Good luck and happy cleaning!