Parenting Expert Says That 8-Year-Old Children Should Be Able to Do Their Own Laundry

kid by dryerAsk Doctor G

Personal question for all of you parents out there: does your little one do chores around the house? We know, we know, it’s quite the loaded question, especially considering most people under the age of 25 seem to be “allergic” to all things related to household preservation and beautification.

But, “deadly allergies” aside, there really is no reason for even the youngest of kiddos to be left off the chores list. Just ask child development expert, Dr. Deborah Gliboa. According to her, kids as young as 18 months-old should be involved in household cleaning practices. This is because performing even the simplest of domestic tasks influences kids to become “problem solvers of good character.”

Solid kids and a clean house? Sounds like a win-win to us!

In a video on the good doctor’s YouTube channel,  Ask Doctor G, the child development expert proves her point that all kids can do chores by showing her 8-year-old successfully doing his own laundry–at a laundromat no less.

That’s right, this smart kid actually gives a play-by-play of how to complete a load of wash–and the funniest part about it is that the video guide is geared towards college students.

Although we couldn’t find any decent statistics on the number of American college students who cannot do their own laundry, we can safely say that it’s much higher than it should be! Anyone else haunted by the memory of teaching your 20-year-old roommate to operate a dryer? Or…perhaps, YOU were that 20-year-old who couldn’t operate one yourself? Either way, the tongue-in-cheek YouTube video with the pint-sized cleaning aficionado illustrates one very key point–doing chores isn’t that hard!

As mentioned, the little guy is able to successfully figure out his laundromat’s payment system, separate his clothes into light and dark loads, read the instructions posted under the lid of the washing machine, measure out the optimal amount of liquid detergent before throwing the cap in (apparently, that trick helps clean the cap and prevent it from getting lost–smart!), and even switch his clothes over to the drying cycle. It’s a multi-step routine, sure, but he definitely proves an important point–most third graders should be able to do this chore!

According to Dr. Gilboa, chores don’t need to begin at the precious age of eight, though. The expert says that toddlers as young as 18 months should be more than able to perform small chores, like holding the dustpan while the parent sweeps. Pre-K and kindergartners are able to pick up and organize toys (don’t let them convince you otherwise!) and kids as young as six-years-old can begin helping with the laundry. Sounds reasonable to us!

Now that you’ve gotten the scoop on Dr. Gilboa’s helpful chore guidelines, it’s time for you to watch her 8-year-old son’s guide to doing the laundry for college students.

We’d love to hear your thoughts on Dr. Gilboa’s childhood chore milestones. Do you agree with the child development expert? Does your little one help out around the house? If so, what do they do?