“Unfortunately, many of today’s teenagers make no meaningful contribution to their families. They have nothing more to contribute to the family than reluctantly taking out the garbage or picking up their room after being told again and again. That’s not a contribution. At that point it is more like self-preservation.
“Kids need to be given responsibilities in the family that they can claim and make happen without parental badgering. It builds a sense of value and belonging. If they don’t have time, adjust their schedule to make time. Kids who make no meaningful contribution to the family tend to grow up feeling entitled and self-absorbed, making them rotten spouses, parents, and citizens as well.” – Mark Gregston, The Family Citizen (5.28.2010)
It’s important to note that young kids, as well as teenagers, need to be given tasks that are helpful to the adults in the house or playing field or classroom. It should be totally normal for our kids to to little, helpful tasks. They should expect to hear us say, “Hey Joey, go get those cones for me at the far goal. Thanks, man.” It should not shock them to hear us say, “Kathy, grab those books and that globe on the way up to the library for me. Thanks.” And at home, the adults should not always be working harder than the kids. Kids should be working with their parents, not watching TV while mom and dad do all the preparing and cleaning for dinner.
Kids working alongside adults is good for everybody!