NASHVILLE (WSMV) – Household chores can help improve children’s grades in class.
Associate Professor of Psychology Diana Leyva and her colleagues wondered how household chores can create learning opportunities at home for children.
They made several discoveries after parents were given simple tips for involving children in household chores.
“What we found was that when parents were given simple tips for involving children in household chores, children had larger vocabulary over time and they were also more willing to learn than parents who weren’t getting that advice, ”Leyva said.
There are four simple tips for parents. The first is to make grocery lists with their children of the things they will buy when they go to the store. It’s a great way for kids to practice their writing and reading skills.
“If they’re older kids and they know their letters and numbers, they can use them, but if they’re younger, they can draw pictures or a combination of pictures and a few letters and numbers. “ Leyva said.
The next tip is to practice math while you cook and set the table. Parents can ask their children to take out a number of apples from the refrigerator or utensils from the kitchen drawer. By doing this, children can practice their addition and subtraction.
“You can ask your child to help you put the ingredients together by saying things like, ‘Can you get me four apples out of the fridge,’” Leyva said. “If you are setting the table, you can also ask your children to help you by asking them, ‘How many forks and knives do we need today?
The third tip is to encourage children to tell stories during meals. It can be stories about anything.
“One thing we do know is that when kids engage with their parents in these conversations, kids do better in school later on,” Leyva said.
The final tip is that parents use the language they feel most comfortable with. For example, some parents feel pressured to use English because their children use it at school.
“However, parents should use the language they feel most comfortable with because it is the language that helps them better express their thoughts and feelings,” said Leyva. “And one thing we do know is that when kids have a good foundation in a language, let’s say Spanish, they can use that knowledge as a cornerstone for learning a second language. “
Leyva, who works primarily with Latin American families, said the tips will help parents from all walks of life.