Some toddlers scream and collapse to the ground in a fit of rage when you ask them to help you clean up.
Mine? He demands tasks. He will ask “more? more?” until you’re so desperate for a task for him to do that you start “dropping” carrot peels so he can pick them up and throw them out while you are peeling carrots for dinner.
He does his own laundry. No joke. He will pull his basket of dirty clothes to the washer, climb onto a chair and put every item into the washer. Then, if I’m not fast enough to stop him, he will try to add soap and turn the dials to get it running on his own. (If only I could teach my husband to do the same!)
Dean likes to sweep, as most kids do. Since he was 14 or 15 months, he would play with the little broom and dustpan, sweeping into it and then dumping it into the garbage. Give him the broom outside? He will start putting dirt from the garden onto the walkway and cleaning it up.
He likes to push the shopping cart now. At 20 months old, he has decided he is too big to sit in it (unless it’s a cool car shopping cart then suddenly both his legs are broken and he has to sit down) He has a blast cruising down the aisles of the grocery store, playing “I Spy” until we find the item needed, and then putting it in the cart. He also likes to try to sneak a few extra items in there… You know, in case we wanted a jar of sauerkraut.
Dean has been helping me in the garden this past week or two. He had a blast yesterday, when we planted onion bulbs. Unfortunately, he also had fun digging them all up and putting them back in the bag as well….
Today he learned how to work the hose. And the realization that I am never going to get to use the hose with him around without having to fight over it is sinking in. He had so much fun just spraying a fine mist in the garden. He then decided he was thirsty so he kept trying to drink it while spraying it away from him. And then there were a few times that he pointed it at himself and pulled the trigger… Getting a face full of water! He was pretty quick to toss the hose down and come running over to me with this look of half-enjoyment, half-WTF-just-happened. Every time, he would tell me “water!” and then go running back to water the garden again.
And he actually did really good with watering the garden! I think I will have to enslave, I mean… enlist, him to help me water everyday!
Does your little one like to help out around the house? Do you add extra work into a task just so your child can help out and feel included?