Got Chores? Get Your Toddlers Involved.


Yup, get those little kiddos involved in chores. Start ’em young, that way it will be less of a “chore” and more of a way of life. That’s my hope anyway, since I am only on my first round of parenting (times two – that’s the twin part).

Here are the tools you will need to get your toddlers involved in chores:

1. A Cappy.

What is a Cappy, and where will you get one? Well, I will tell you that they are not available online or in stores. You might find them in the backyard or up a ladder, or fishing or showing you how to do chores. They are quite old (ooooh, dangerous territory here!) but look and act younger than they are – and they are usually two generations removed from their grandkids (in this case the toddlers). So Yes, a Cappy is a grandfather, and hopefully you are lucky enough to have one of your very own.

This is how Cappy taught my toddlers to do chores. Cappy needed to remove the fallen sticks in his backyard, and was quite happy doing it. But he made it look like too much fun, when he started throwing them into the brush, and before you know it the twins were involved and tossing the sticks into the brush.

Exclaims of “It’s a big one” could be heard from the twins, followed by “Yes, a big one” from Cappy. This went on for almost an hour as they boys helped Cappy clean up the back yard, and the same two lines of conversation went back and forth :)

Our twins like to be helpful, as I’m sure most kids do at this age. They enjoy praise and enjoy mastering their environment. This is the perfect situation for adding in chores. They learn skills and get positive reinforcement.

My toddler twins help with the following chores – so here is a list of toddler friendly chores:

Emptying and filling the dishwasher

Cooking food (stirring, measuring, counting out ingredients. This is what the boys were helping with last summer :))

Vacuuming (although they get distracted with this one, lol!)

Taking out the trash (they help me hold the bag, while I carry it)

Throwing their food and wrappers in the trash.

They are still working on cleaning up after themselves, but hey they are only 2 1/4 years old.

I must sound like a drill sergeant, but really the kids enjoy helping out. And hopefully, as I mentioned before that this will just be a way of life and not a real “chore”.

What do you think? Do your kids help out around the house? Do you think this is appropriate at this age? I’d love to hear from you.


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About Twin Mom

34 year old, born in a small steel town in South Africa, now living in a large Steel City in the US. Mother of twins and loving every moment.
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20 Responses to Got Chores? Get Your Toddlers Involved.

  1. Pamela R says:

    oh the things they will do when they are “PLAYING” =^D So nice to have a Cappy around–we are BLESSED and have two full sets of great-grands parents for our kids

  2. Jennifer Silk says:

    Very smart. Research shows making kids do chores early promotes development of prosocial behavior

  3. DelSheree says:

    I love our ideas! Making it fun is definitely key. I wish it worked like that as well when they get older :)

    • Twin Mom says:

      I’ll let you know if starting younger means easier when older! Who knows, maybe the older they are the more resistant despite this “early intervention”. This could be a good study :)

  4. Mollygram says:

    P.S. “Cappy” is short for The Captain. The boys can also help by handing you items from the dryer and putting them in different family member’s piles. Plus a small dustpan and brush is always handy. Such a great age!

    • Twin Mom says:

      Great ideas from the Captain’s wife :) Yes we are already working on throwing things in the dryer just not at the sorting stage yet. I see that in our future :)

  5. One of the first few chores that I taught my son was to put his toys back in the toy box once he’s done playing. Made my life a lot easier, haha. :)

  6. OUPA says:

    Working with Cappy is such fun. Well done boys.

  7. Christy says:

    I have always made my kids help out around the house. When they are younger, I always gave my older kids age appropriate chores. Now they do the dishes, cook some, do laundry, know how to clean bathrooms, ect. It’s nice having help around the house plus it teaches them responsibility.

  8. You are right on target starting them young. We didn’t and with my now teen-aged son, it’s a pain in the butt. But I have hope! I’ll be “Cappy” for my grandkids and start ’em early! Heehee!

  9. Maya says:

    This is great! I have my 16 month old twins helping as much as possible. They “helped” load the dishwasher. They know how to take their clothes to the “dirty” basket, and love to throw away trash. Now, if I can just keep them from tossing our valuables. I enjoy your blog, thanks for visiting mine!

    • Twin Mom says:

      LOL – yes, I have to watch what my boys throw away too! I have fished out quite a few real glasses :) They will learn!

  10. My 3 year old totally loves helping. Her jobs include putting rinsed recycle materials in the right bin, setting the table (she gives her sister two spoons, one for eating and one for playing.). She’s good at finding matches for socks in the laundry, helping with cooking (she cuts mushrooms with a butter knife, and can even break eggs, and knows about washing hands after). She helps in the garden too, we just planted some herbs and pansies, and she helped me take out a bush by piling the cut branches in a pile. She is also a great help for baby sister, finding toys, singing songs, and even putting toys away. She also helps a ton in the grocery store, especially counting fruit and putting things in the bag or cart. I think having her do these things gives her some level of control and ownership.

    • Twin Mom says:

      Diana – she sounds precious – especially making sure her sister has an extra spoon for playing! You are right I definitely believe her helping with the chores gives her some ownership. And I am sure it makes you proud too :) Win, Win!

  11. Sista says:

    What a great post. All 3 of them look very satisfied with a days work well done! This is really such a great age. Enjoy these helpful moments Sista as the older they get the harder it is to get them to “enjoy” let alone DO chores. I think the secret to getting any child involved in chores is to make it fun, turn it into a game, you can’t go wrong!

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