Parents finally have research to back up their long-held beliefs about the importance of helping around the house – a recent study has found that children who are actively involved in household chores are more successful in life and happier.
A study conducted by pediatricians at the University of Virginia on 10 000 primary-school-age children found that children who wash dishes, vacuum or put clothes in the washing machine and hang them perform better academically than those who do not.
Children who were not actively involved in household chores and did not want to help out around the house were recorded as being up to 30% more likely to be dissatisfied with their lives.
Parents reported how frequently their children did chores at home and children in third grade were asked to answer questions regarding their perceived interest or competence in academics, peer relationships, life satisfaction and prosocial behavior.
“The frequency of chores in kindergarten was positively associated with a child’s perception of social, academic, and life satisfaction competencies in the third grade, independent of sex, family income, and parent education,” states the article of the study and its findings, “Associations Between Household Chores and Childhood Self-Competency”.
In contrast, children who did not help around the house and were unlikely to lend a hand during chores did not fair as well.
“Compared with children who regularly performed chores, children who rarely performed chores had greater odds of scoring in the bottom quintile on self-reported prosocial, academic ability, peer relationship, and life satisfaction scores,” the article states.
So if you’re a parent who has often had to deal with kids complaining about washing the dishes or hanging the clothes on the washing line, show them this and ask them to thank you for all the success and happiness you’ve brought into their lives.