Big Huge List of Kid Chores (grouped by age)!

These are my suggestions, but you know your kids best. It’s always nice to have an idea what could be expected, so that you know if it is time to teach a new skill.

Every time you introduce a new chore to your child, you’ll do it WITH THEM the first few times. Don’t just explain with words – teach hands on. This will make everyone happier in the end, because the child will feel more comfortable with expectations and they’ll do a better job (making your life easier)!

My kids don’t do ALL of these chores during the same week, I rotate through having them do different kinds of jobs. I don’t want them cleaning around the clock – they need a childhood too. 

Baby & Toddler “Chores”

Babies and toddlers will double or triple the time it takes to do any task. When you’re with them constantly as a parent (what feeeeels like 24/7), you might as well include them in things and let it take longer. Folding the towels with your toddler constantly tipping your piles over, even when it takes 3x longer than doing it alone during nap-time, means that you WILL NOT be folding towels during nap-time. You deserve some personal time when your child is sleeping. Besides, this is quality time with your kids. Quality time doesn’t just have to be entertainment-based!

How to use Cleaning for Quality Time with Babies & Toddlers

Folding Towels: As I fold with my kids, I talk out loud to them. Kids hearing a variety of vocabulary is important for speech development. I carry this through preschool when I give my toddlers a pile of the washcloths to “fold” while I fold everything else. I don’t know if anything sinks in, but I use a lot of math fraction terms while I fold in half/quarters/etc.

Dusting: As my kids started cruising with me, I took them on a walk through the house. I hand them a clean duster (clean because it will end up in their mouth), and they often pretend to dust with me.

Baby Bouncers/ Stationary Play Sets: When my kids were young, especially with infant twins, I would drag the baby equipment around the house when it was time to clean bathrooms. They would watch me while playing with their toys.  

See my little guy while I cleaned his playpen? He was the cutest baby. There were lots of helpers that day.

Preschooler Chores 

  • All the Infant/Toddler “Chores” above, plus …
  • Brush Teeth
  • Folding Washcloths (sloppily, but it counts)
  • Laundry: Load Washing Machine
  • Make Bed (as preschoolers, this just means getting everything onto the bed instead of floor)
  • Pick up toys
  • Put away dirty clothes
  • Super Tidy

Fake ALL The Chores: If I’ve noticed anything about preschoolers, it’s that they love to imitate the big people around them!

My youngest daughter, when she was four, used to wear a princess dress, plastic Dora purse, and push her baby in a tiny doll stroller. Every time she would whisper “Does everyone think I’m a mommy too?” My son, who is four right now, pretends to be the one driving our van from his car seat behind me. 

Preschoolers LOVE to imitate us, so let them! Provide them with tools and let them “help,” just don’t expect anything to actually be helpful. Their sweeping or vacuuming won’t be effective. They’ll miss spots on the window and mirror. The cleaning isn’t effective, but the training is very effective. They are learning that they are expected to help!

This is my 4 year old’s chore chart. You can download my FREE sticker chart for personal use.

Early Elementary (5-8)

This is a wonderful time for kids to start REALLY helping. Hallelujah! At 5, they won’t be very good at all of these jobs, but they can try them out. By 8, they’ll be pretty good at them, especially if they’ve been learning for 3 years!

  • All the Preschooler Chores above, plus …
  • Clean Bathroom: Tub
  • Clean Vehicle: Clear Trash
  • Declutter
  • Dinner Assistant
  • Dust
  • Empty Dishwasher
  • Laundry: Sort Laundry, Change Laundry to Dryer, Remove Clean Clothes
  • Load their own dishes in Dishwasher
  • Sweep
  • Vacuum
  • Wipe Cabinet Fronts in Bathroom & Kitchen
  • Wipe Drawer Fronts in Bathroom & Kitchen

Tweens (9-12)

I have three Tweens at my house right now. They help me so much! I arrange their jobs to supplement my own chores. Their work lightens my load quite a bit!

  • All the Early Elementary Chores above, plus …
  • Clean Bathroom: Counter
  • Clean Bathroom: Sink
  • Clean Bathroom: Toilet
  • Clean Bathroom: Mirrors
  • Clean Dishes
  • Clean Doors
  • Clean Kitchen: Microwave
  • Clean Vehicle: Vacuum
  • Clean Vehicle: Wipe Interior
  • Clean Vehicle: Assist with Exterior
  • Dinner Prep (simple dishes)
  • Empty Garbage
  • Laundry: Fold Laundry (this contraption will help!)
  • Laundry: Put Laundry Away
  • Laundry: Hang Up
  • Load Anything in Dishwasher 
  • Mop
  • Tidy (remove things that don’t belong and fix askew things)
  • Wash Bedding: Remove Dirty Sheets
  • Spring Cleaning (most things)

In How I Torture My Kids to Keep My House Clean {e.g. Kids Chores}, I talk about using this chore chart. It is the same template I created for my own Tweens – it works!

Teens (13+)

Select chores for your teen that challenge them a little bit. They want to be treated like adults, and chores are a great way to develop responsibility. Teens are capable of so much! Let them really help and show gratitude.

  • All the Tween Chores above, plus …
  • Clean Kitchen: Fridge & Freezer
  • Clean Kitchen: Oven
  • Clean Kitchen: Small Appliances
  • Clean Vehicle: Exterior
  • Dust Light Fixtures & Ceiling Fans
  • Laundry from start to finish
  • Meal Plan (up to a few days a week)
  • Meal Prep
  • Spring Cleaning (almost ALL)
  • Wash Bedding: Remove and Replace
  • Wash Windows

Organize – teens are capable of more than just tidying by now, they can start developing real organizing skills. While they’re learning, have them work on spaces that have been organized before, but have come un-done a bit: like bathroom cabinets, pantries, and drawers. Work your way up to the full bedroom.

Let them Clean!

Kids should help clean the house they live in. It really makes the home a more peaceful place when everyone is helping. Parents that do everything themselves have good intentions, I’m sure, but they also might be feeling frazzled and overwhelmed. When you don’t feel so weighed down by responsibility over all the tedious tasks yourself, you’ll feel better and happier. Everyone in the home benefits from that! It takes some work teaching them, but hey, it’s a great excuse for quality time.

Anything I missed? Tell me in the comments what chores your kids do!

Happy Spring!

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7 thoughts on “Big Huge List of Kid Chores (grouped by age)!

  1. I’m impressed by all that your kids are doing to help around the house! Do you use the charts for any kinds of rewards or punishments?

    1. Not rewards or punishments really, just to “keep track.” They’ve been doing it so long, it is just a part of what we do. If you’re new at getting your kids involved, bribery is okay! Whatever works to get the good habits started. :)

  2. I love all the help you awre getting from your kids!! Mine are grown up now and real slobs in their own homes!! But I basically taught them to do all those thngs when they were younger
    . I left a list each morning of what I expected to be done and most times it was done. The persom who started first got theit pick of what they wanted to do!!

  3. I absolutely love this Mary!! I will be implementing the ones I am missing. Also I was excited to see a lot of the chores you listed for the different ages my kids are already
    doing!

Leave a comment! I love to hear what you think!