Children are always learning and parents are some of the most important educators that young children have. Household chores can become a great learning experience for young children that reinforces and enhances their formal classroom learning. Here are some ideas.
Separating the clothes for the laundry
One of the very common household tasks in a house with young children is laundry! You can get your child to help you identify the colours on each piece of clothing and help you separate the clothing into different piles for washing. This helps children to recognise different colours and shades, which is a common task in early childhood education. You can also get the child to hand you items to hang on the line when the wash is done and identify the different colours and types of clothing again.
Helping with laundry also exposes children to different materials and textures, allowing them to develop other important sensory abilities.
Writing a shopping list
Another common task is writing a list of items that someone might need to buy at the shops. You can get your child to help check the items in the cupboards and fridges and help you to help you work out which items to put you on the list. You can also get the child to identify some of the sounds in the words to 'help' you work out how to write the words. This helps children work out some connections between sounds and written letters as well as demonstrating some planning skills in writing lists and planning outings.
Another great way to teach children how to follow instructions is to get them to help with making some simple recipes. Some popular options, such as pikelets, can be good as they are quick and easy to make. You can even find pictorial recipes that show cups of milk and eggs (as well as text). This can help the children learn how to follow instructions as well as helping with spatial awareness such as adding half and third cups of items to a recipe. These are valuable pre-mathematic skills which can lead to a valuable understanding of the concepts behind the maths that they learn in formal education.
If you are a parent or carer of a young child, you have a valuable part to play in their early childhood education. Using normal day-to-day chores, you can reinforce some of the concepts they will learn in formal schooling at programs like Hopskotch Kindergarten and create a positive foundation for future learning.