Wednesday afternoon Levi and Taytum helped us water and care for our flowers.
Some are early bloomers and want to be helpful at 2, but by about 3 you can almost always depend on having your little one on your heels while you work around the house. So put them to work, too!
This is a great age to let little ones take on more responsibility- helping wash dishes, washing the car or their bike, carrying groceries, washing produce, stirring the oatmeal cookies, setting the table, putting away the silverware from the dishwasher, watering plants, feeding pets, sweeping floors, sorting laundry... the list goes on.
'HELPING' is the key word. Toddlers are not ready for most things yet without your help and supervision, but if you stay patient it will pay off. They will need you to stay close for most things still, and should always be closely supervised in the kitchen, around tools and machinery and other areas where they could get hurt. But it shouldn't stop you from letting them help!
The key is to enlist them when they show interest, instead of waiting until you think they won't make a mess doing it. Keep it fun and accept the mess factor. They will quickly learn to master the new skill and gain confidence, positive self esteem, trust in you (after all, you trusted them to do it!), and independence.
And if you are very lucky- they will learn an appreciation for hard work. But that's just icing on an already sweet cupcake.