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What’s Your Job?

What a good feeling it can be for children to know that it’s not only adults who are the “helpers,” but that children can be helpers too.


What a good feeling it can be for children to know that it’s not only adults who are the “helpers,” but that children can be helpers too.


Large piece of paper or cardboard
Game spinner
Link here for Spinner instructions
Name tags


When children know their help is valuable, they feel valued, and naturally they’re likely to do helpful things for us and for others in the future.

On the paper or cardboard, list jobs every¬one in the family can do and put the list where everyone can see it. Even a preschool¬er can help with some household chores, like:
Sponge the table
Put out napkins or spoons for a meal
Water plants
Pick up toys
Help wash the car
Sweep the rug

Beside each job, write a number that corresponds to the numbers on a spinner.

Take turns spinning the spinner to assign a job for the week to everyone in the family. Take the corresponding name tag next to the chore on the chart.

Remember that when you praise your children for being helpful, you are helping them feel proud of the things they can do and for taking on responsibility.

Take It Further

  • Make a little celebration for special growth steps and accomplishments like:
    • staying dry all night;
    • learning to share toys with a friend or sibling;
    • learning to ride a trike;
    • buttoning or fastening clothes. Applaud little gifts from your child, like a song he or she made up or a kind gesture given to a playmate.

  • Show your child that you value all sorts of things that work where larger ones wouldn't, like small paper clips or a little pair of scissors.

Talk About It

With our encouragement, little by little children can take on more and more responsibility for themselves. They can begin by picking out their clothes or putting toys away. They can also do simple chores that help the whole family.

When children do grownup things like setting the table, sorting laundry or vacuuming the floor, they feel more grownup. In the long road toward independence, they need those small steps along the way to feel competent, capable, and more confident. What a good feeling it can be for children to know they're accomplishing something helpful and contributing in their own way to the family.

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