Chores - kids can do more than you think!

child doing chores

Suggestions for chores by age:

2 years old- put away toys with help, wash vegetables/fruit in the sink

3-5 years old - clean up/put away toys, hand mom groceries to put away, help sweep the floor, feed the pets (with help), pull weeds, help mom with anything

6-7years old - clean own room (may need pointers from parents to know where to put things), use dustbuster /mini vacuum, sweep floor, wipe counter/table, set the table (to some degree), load dishwasher (except glassware perhaps)

8-10 years old- help with cooking, make own sandwiches/snacks, put away laundry, load washer/dryer (with help for setting the laundry machines), take out trash, vacuum, clean bathroom (with directions provided/given)

10-12 years old- cook a simple meal (after being taught), use microwave alone, get own food, clean up, dust, clean the bathroom, put garbage cans at the curb on trash day, get the mail, put groceries away, [shouldn’t need as much direction/supervision at this age]

13 years old and up- do own laundry, cook at least one dinner/week, clean own room without needing help, and vacuum/dust common areas, clean bathroom, cut the grass, [once can drive can run errands too]

Tiperoo: Make a chart/list (or print one online – there are many freebies to pick from!) of how to do a chore and place it in the room that it is needed. For example: how to run the washer/dryer in the laundry room, how to load and set the dishwasher in the kitchen, etc.




You're job as mom (or dad)- for stay at home parents

stay home mom

Your job as mom

So you’re a stay at home mom. It’s your “job” to clean the house, do the laundry, cook meals, etc, right? Well yes… but it’s even more important to teach your child how to do these things and teach them responsibility or they won’t be successfully independent. Your job as mom (and dad!) is not to make your kids dependent on you- it should be to work yourself out of a job (not that your kids will never need you! Even as adults we still need our parents, right?!). “Working yourself out of a job” means you train your children to do the things they need to learn as life skills so they can be on their own one day. It’s more than just teaching your daughter how to use the washing machine or your son how to vacuum, but also requiring and expecting them to help out around the house, do their chores, and care for their things. When they go to college or move out they might be shocked there’s no magical mom-fairy that picks up their stuff, washes their laundry, etc! They need to learn these things now as children so they will be ready for their future. Start as young as possible, and expect more as they grow up. Older teens should be able to do pretty much everything around the house that the parents can do. Younger children may need help but can do more than you might think! It’s definitely harder to teach than to just do it for them but in the long run its better for your child, and it’s less work for you as they can start taking over more responsibility as they get older and there’s less for you to do. Life skills are sometimes even more important than academic skills as everyone needs these for daily living in any future living situation they may find themselves in. So remember don’t do everything for your child but teach them out to do for themselves! 

[see also article on chores by age] 

College Application steps- for teens

college sign

College application steps

(steps may vary)

1.     Identify interest/career idea/major choice- take a career interest survey or ask your guidance counselor for help if you don’t know what you want to study

2.     Look up colleges that have that major- if you need help there are websites that can help with that or ask your high school guidance counselor

3.     Think about what kind of college you are interested in: consider location- close/far from home as well as urban/suburban/rural areas, cost, programs/majors available, reputation, housing, transportation, etc

4.     Research the colleges you are interested in online- find out all about them, ask college to send you more information.

5.     Tour the college in person if possible, ask the admissions people a lot of questions, get all the info you can

6.     Apply online or on paper- try to apply to about 5 schools (more is fine!) don’t worry too much about whether they will take you or not! [Note- if you had a bad grade year/semester then explain why on the application- maybe you went through a rough break up, had severe anxiety, etc.] There are a lot of essays to write so try to apply to one per week over the summer if possible. Apply early so they will take you with early admission before they run out of space. If applying to art schools make sure you have a good portfolio that shows of your range of talent. If you need letters of reference from high school teachers try to ask them for that before end of school year as they may be hard to reach over the summer.

7.     Complete the FAFSA online with your parents- this shows what your family qualifies for with financial aid. [There is a due date for this- needs parents last tax statements and other information]/

8.     Wait to see if you are accepted- if you are accepted they will send you financial aid information, acceptance letter, paperwork, info, etc

9.     Decide which college you want to attend from the ones that accepted you

10.  Complete the financial aid information they sent and accept scholarships and grants, complete any paperwork they send you.

11. Explore other scholarships and grants besides just from the college- look online, ask if any community programs, high school, etc offer any

12. Save some money from summer jobs.

13. Explore all financial options before taking student loans

14.  Figure out housing options- live on campus, live at home/with local relatives, find apartment with roommates…

15. Keep saving money from summer jobs. Consider job on campus during school year.

16.Pack and get ready to go!! Have fun!!!!

Finding a job- for teens and adults

teen jobs

Finding a Job Tips, by Patience Domowski, LCSW

1.     Job Search- Facebook, newspaper ads, help wanted signs, online search engines, ask friends and friends’ parents, etc…

Online Search Engines
Snagajob- retail jobs

Facebook groups: search- job share network, employment,etc

Ask people you know – for job suggestions, to mow their lawns, clean house, watch kids, care for pets, house sit, odd jobs, etc


2.     Apply- online and in person- complete at least 5-10 applications!

Apply in person: restaurants, grocery stores, retail stores, general stores- Walmart, Kmart, Target, mall stores, pharmacy stores, car washes…


3.     Follow up with phone call- ask to speak to the HIRING MANAGER, ask for an interview

4.     Interview- highlight your strengths, know what weaknesses you can mention if they ask, know your schedule, provide references, any related experiences, try role playing interviews with friends/parents ahead of time so you feel more confident, take a deep breath and try not to be too anxious. Try to exude confidence- why would they not hire you? You’re awesome!

5.     Follow up after Interview with a phone call – ask for the person who interviewed with and ask when you can start

6.     If they hire you- start work. Show up on time!! If they don’t take you, don’t take it personally- keep trying! (Repeat steps 1-5)


CareerLink- [Exton, PA]- provides workshops, job listings, job fairs, career counselors, resume help, etc