Who's turn for the dishes?
by Tash Hughes of
Whether it’s the
kids arguing about it, adults nagging about it or an
unspoken conflict between the adults, many families
have battles with getting the dishes done.
Or doing the
vacuuming. Or cleaning the bathroom. Or sorting the
washing when it comes in. Or taking out the rubbish. Or
many other household chores.
The bottom line
is that these jobs need to be done, and sooner is often
better as they seem to grow when left for a time! It
certainly doesn’t seem fair that one or two people do
all these tasks when there are others capable of
helping, but how can you get everyone to pull their
weight? Especially without world war three each time
young children can’t do an equal share of the household
jobs, but you’d be surprised at how much they can do.
Even before they’re two, toddlers can take the cutlery
to the table and spread it out – sure, it won’t be set
out with knife on the right and so on, but it will be
enough. And toddlers LOVE to help.
start doing chores very early develop a sense of
contributing and really belonging to the family;
doing things for people we love is an important
relationship builder. It also means that there is
less fuss as they get older as they know everyone has to
help out – there will still be some fuss as kids will be
If you intend to
give children pocket money, it is best to make them earn
it from the start. If you give them pocket money without
tasks for earning it, and then later say “no pocket
money this week unless you do the vacuuming”, it will be
a hard adjustment for all concerned.
likes the ideas of rosters and timetables as they seem
too formal and restricting, however they can be very
helpful and create more free time for all concerned.
Consider a family of four where all are able to do some
basic jobs that no one really likes to do. How often do
you think they argue or bicker about getting jobs like
the dishes done? How likely is it that one or two people
do most of the work and the begging for help?
However, if a
roster is set up with the four least wanted jobs, each
person only has to do the job for one week out of the
month. Cleaning the bathroom one week a month is better
than having that as your regular job every week!
Having a clearly defined roster makes it easier for all
to take responsibility for their own tasks and no one
has to nag for jobs to be done!
together and compromising, families can keep the house
clean and running well and still have time for other
activities. And avoid many of the arguments that upset
Tash Hughes is
the owner of
Word Constructions and is available to solve all
your business writing problems! From letters to
policies, newsletters to web content, Word Constructions
writes all business documents to your style and