Training Resistant Kids to do Their Chores

At Love and Logic we teach that all children should make meaningful contributions to the family in the form of chores. Very small children can “help” their parents. As soon as they are six or seven, it’s time for them to begin doing their chores without reminders and without pay. Over the last three decades, we’ve developed the following three-part process for making this happen:

“A” stands for: Ask your child to do a chore you are sure they won’t, and give them a deadline for completion.

While this may sound silly, resistant children will only learn to do their chores if they learn that failing to do them will result in some rather sad consequences. When assigning the chore, don’t say, “Do it now!” Give the child a deadline instead. This gives you plenty of time to figure out what you might do if the child either refuses to do the chore or forgets.

“B” stands for: Be quiet. Resist the urge to nag, remind, or threaten.

“C” stands for: Consequences and empathy will do the teaching. Many parents are successful with saying, “This is so sad. I had to do your chores for you. Now I don’t have the time and energy to _____________.” Just fill in the blank with any privilege you typically provide for the child.

You can find more techniques in the Schoolwork/Homework Package.