Chore List by Age

Need helo implementing chores? Check out our chore list by age.

Requiring your child to complete chores helps teach valuable skills for independence, builds self-confidence, and takes some of the work off your plate. The below chore list by age provides examples of what kinds of tasks your child could be ready for at a particular age. As your child grows, you can pull chores from their current age category as well as from any younger age category.

Please note, your child may or may not be ready to perform these tasks at the given numerical age based on their current course of development or if they have a disability or disorder.

You know best what your child is capable of. The important part about chores is teaching your child responsibility, accountability and self-efficacy. As long as you are requiring some chores and they are working towards these goals at a level appropriate to their development, what chore you choose does not matter.

If your child has a learning disability, special needs or a disorder, please read our tips on chores for children with special needs to go along with this chore list by age.

Help your child succeed

After you chose a task from our chore list by age, take the time to teach your child exactly how you want them to perform the task

With any new task, expect to have to break down each chore into simple steps and teach your child exactly how you want them to perform it. It may be common sense to you, but your child has never learned it before so be patient and understanding as they learn a new skill. Make sure to stick close to them the first handful of times and show them rather than tell them what you expect. Once they can perform the task properly two or three times, you should be able to leave them to complete the task on their own, depending on their age and ability.

When your child completes their chore, don’t forget to check their work and keep them accountable. If they have made a mistake, don’t get mad. Simply show them how to correct the mistake and ask them to re-do that part. If your child has a breakdown at this point, let them take a break first and tell them they can come back to the task after a specified period of time or before a different activity begins. If a chore repeatedly results in mistakes or a breakdown, it is either time to re-teach the task in smaller steps or to choose a different chore for a while.

Chore Lists by Age

Ages 2 – 3

  • Put away toys
  • Dust leather couch/furniture
  • Wipe down table
  • Pair socks
  • Water plants
  • Move chairs for vacuuming

Ages 4 – 5

  • Help carry grocery bags
  • Set table
  • Help unpack grocery bags
  • Make bed independently

Ages 6 – 7

  • Take out trash
  • Load/Unload dishwasher
  • Fold laundry
  • Help prepare a meal
  • Pack own lunch
  • Help take care of a pet

Ages 8 – 9

  • Put away groceries
  • Hand wash dishes
  • Vacuum
  • Rake leaves
  • Shovel snow
  • Prepare a family meal
  • Take care of a pet (give food, water, clean area and walk)

Ages 10 – 11

  • Clean bathroom
  • Mow lawn
  • Do laundry
  • Clean windows
  • Sew for minor needs/fixes

Ages 12 +

  • Help with more extensive house cleaning and organization projects
  • Watch younger children independently (for 2-4 hours)
  • Help run small errands