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Higher Achieving Adults Had Chores as Children

Updated on September 20, 2012

Chores Lead to Higher Success

"A child has to have some responsibilities," says Roger W. McIntire, PhD, author of Raising Good Kids in Tough Timesand a University of Maryland psychology professor.

McIntire goes on to explain children can do many chores at a young age. Children learn by doing. Skills like, sharing, helping, and caring for others can be learned while completing household tasks. Children were asked why they do chores at home, and most replied they were helping. They did not says because they had to, or for the money.

Marty Rossmann, from the College of Education & Human Development at the University of Minnesota says, “Parents of the world, take note: You can make a big difference in your children’s future by asking them to take out the trash. And do the laundry, wash the dishes, make the beds, and put away the toys.” Children who had chores growing up had a greater sense of responsibilty, more self-reliance and more self worth. These assets stayed with them all their lives.

Rossmann said the best predictor of children’s success in their mid-20s was that they participated in chores when they were three or four. “Using measures of individual’s success such as completion of education, getting started on a career path, IQ, relationships with family and friends, and not using drugs, and examining a child’s involement in household tasks at eariler times. However, if they did not begin participating until they 15 or 16, the participation backfired and those subjects were less successful. “

Young Children are Part of the Family

The chores that children do in their youth will help lead them into successful business leaders of tomorrow. The strong development skills taught by regularly doing chores are similar to the skills needed to advance in society.

Dr. John Covey, co-author of “Seven Habits of Highly Effective Families,” states two reasons to give children chores;

1. to get help in getting work done

2. to help children to grow

Dr. Covey was voted by Time Magazine as one of the ’25 Most Influential Americans.’ He believes, “The more you can get kids to buy into interdependency you have resolved 90% of the challenges and problems that come into a family.” Reducing your problems by 90% just by making your children more independent is well worth it. Doing chores breeds independence.

He advocates ‘family is where it’s at.’ Families include all members even the very young. He suggests setting a goal, an activity or treat that the family members want. The steps to achieving this goal rely on all family members completing certain tasks, or chores. Life is based on, ‘if you don’t do this, you won’t get that.’ Starting them at a young age to realize this will make each step much easier. Look at what a child learns by doing chores.

What Children Learn From Chores

1. Time Management When chores have to be completed before children can play or go out, they learned to finish one task before starting another. They planned better and looked ahead to their next move. They learned not to waste time, they learned the value of time and the importance of finishing on time. Good time management limits passive behaviors.

2. Cooperation Working with siblings on getting chores done quicker taught children how to get along with others. This is a team skill needed in the office/work place. The family unit gets a reward for all working together

3. Responsibility If one leg of the chore is not completed the whole family suffers. The goal is not achieved. Children learn that when others do their jobs, your job is also easier. If another team member doesn’t do his chores and the whole unit is punished, children learn they don’t want to be that other person.

4. Sense of belonging/ team the success of the plan is dependent on everyone doing their job. Children learn very early if they don’t do their part, adults and older siblings blame them and it causes a waste of time If a children is entrusted with a responsibly it builds the confidence that you believe in them.

5. Self sufficiency skills Independence is a big task for young children to grasp. Completing chores on their own makes them an important piece of the completed puzzle. Without their help the job couldn’t have been a success. They learn to do their part and the rest will fall into the right order. Their self worth is higher. This helps to develop the ability to think, leads to good problem solving skills

6. Care and Nurturing for others. Children learn to become team players. Each success is linked to the success of each other. Children want everyone to finish their projects, so helping out in any small way gives a sense of togetherness. Children like to help parents. It gives them a sense of worth.

Adults as employees that never hard chores to do as children were lazier let others do work for them, had messier desks and were not as responsible as other employees. These adults were lower achievers. The promotions and higher salaries went to the adults that were taught responsibility by doing chores at an early age.

Children are a very important part of the family and the success of the family. Chores help them realize every move they make helps to make the family run smoother. Chores at an early age prepare children for responsibilities as an adult.


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    • Dianemae profile image

      Dianemae 7 years ago

      You're bring the children up right. Good job.

    • Niiyke profile image

      Niiyke 7 years ago from Lagos, Nigeria

      I agree totally. My kids participate in chores whether they really do them well or not(the oldest is 5yrs).

      And my 5yr old started folding clothes when she was 4. kids will pick up what they are exposed to.

    • Dianemae profile image

      Dianemae 7 years ago

      Thank you for your comments and for reading my hub.

    • breathe2travel profile image

      breathe2travel 7 years ago from Gulf Coast, USA

      I wholeheartedly agree! Our children participate in caring for our home, including: bed making, loading/unloading dishwasher, sweeping floor, wiping table & counters, folding & putting away laundry.

      When I went off to college, I was seriously surprised at how many students could not do their own laundry, and was thankful I had learned the life skill while growing up.

      Useful, voted up. :)