We have a pretty cool mini-mini-series launching today. I’ve been seeing a lot of those “chores your child could be doing” articles showing up in my social media feeds lately, and I was thinking about those as well about how children in other cultures seem to be MUCH more willing to help out with work around the house. I’m not saying we want to train our children to be slave laborers, but why is it that children in Western cultures really don’t seem to do chores unless they’re paid to do them?
We’re going to hold off on the “getting paid” part for now, and we’ll talk about that very soon with my guest Ron Lieber, the Money columnist of the New York Times who wrote a book called The Opposite of Spoiled. But today we’re going to discuss the chores part with Andrew Coppens, who is an Assistant Professor of Education in Learning Sciences at the University of New Hampshire. If you’ve ever asked your child to do a task in the home only to have them say “No,” then get comfy and listen up, because I have a feeling that our conversation is going to surprise you and give you some new tools for your toolbox.
Coppens, A.D., & Acala, L. (2015). Supporting children’s initiative: Appreciating family contributions or paying children for chores. Advances in Child Development and Behavior 49, 91-112. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/bs.acdb.2015.10.002
Coppens, A.D., Acala, L., Rogoff, B., & Mejia-Arauz, R. (2016). Children’s contributions in family work: Two cultural paradigms. In S. Punch, R.M. Vanderbeck, & T. Skelton (Eds.), Families, intergenerationality, and per group relations: Geographies of children and young people (Vol 5). New York, NY: Springer.