Dec
07
2011

Terribly Helpful Two-Year-Olds

We often hear people criticize their two year olds as being incredibly unhelpful in the kitchen. Sometimes it takes a little training, but these little ones are able to help much more than you’d think. Check out this great video of 2-year-old Zechariah helping out with breakfast.

We think 2-year-olds are “terrific.” We also think they can do much greater things if we just let them. Instead of taking the overly important things (like cracking eggs) from them, try incorporating them into the work of the family. You may have to put up with a few shells in the egg bowl, but is that really a big deal?

How do you incorporate your 2-year-olds?

About Chris & Wendy Jeub

The Jeub Family live in Monument, Colorado. They encourage couples to love God and love one another, building an atmosphere of love in their homes.

  • http://www.largefamilysmallworld.com/ Large Family Small World

    My two year old loves to help with just about anything around the house.  We give her a rag and she wipes the table, floor, cupboards, whatever we are working on.  She likes to help set the table.  When it is time to bake she is right there next to me (and my nearly four year old) waiting to dump things in the bowl!

  • T. Gates

    Our two year old likes to help put trash in the trash can and dirty laundry in the hamper.  I think if you don’t let them help when they’re little and willing you’re going to have a harder time getting them to when they’re older because they won’t feel like you really need them to.  Just curious, do you give your children any kind of allowance or pay for helping around the house and do you assign chores to them?

    • T. Gates

      Also, I sometimes get overwhelmed and stressed when ALL of my children want to help out or the baby is crying while I’m trying to let the others do something “messy”.  I just want to get the job over with, but they’re wanting to help.  We have five children ages 7, 5, 3, 2, and 3m.  I would love to hear how you handle situations such as those!

      • Thom

        The Jeubs have lots of older kids to supervise. Their oldest ones are not away at college. That makes things a whole lot easier, I’m sure.

        • T. Gates

          yes, but still there was a point in their lives when their older ones were the smaller ones and there were no older ones there to help

  • Ann Washburn

    well, my 2 year old is now 6, but I have always with him, if he says he wants to help, to do something (that is not dangerous), I let him do it, find out if he can, praise him if he does it, and encourage him not to get disappointed if he finds out that he can’t do it.  “try, try, try” is our motto.

  • Sheila

    Hi Chris and Wendy,
                                                I loved that video clip! I have so many memories of my boys helping me do housework when they were small. They used to like polishing the furniture with a duster although I found my polish lasted longer if I sprayed it myself!
                                                 My eldest son was 19 yesterday and I cherish those memories and would encourage every mother to take the time to let their children help even if jobs take longer. It’s more important to make memories than to have everything done perfectly.
                                                                 
                                                   Sheila (UK)

  • mrscindeed

    We (my older kids and myself) usually limit the number of helpers during a cooking job.  We have them take turns being a helper because, you’re right, T. Gates, having them all “help” is pretty tough.  Since your’s are all pretty young maybe they can each take a turn with one part of the job.  Sometimes I do tell my kids that I’m in too much of a hurry (or whatever) to have any helpers this time.  I try to limit those times. 

    • T. Gates

      thanks!

  • Somebody Somewhere

    Well.. um… that is pretty bad that he cracks an egg better than I do !!! LOL . Yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeea, eggs and I kinda dont have a very good relationship.

    I guess that leaves alot to be said for my being in the kitchen at all… bw aha aha aa !

  • Taryn

    I hope his hands were washed well after this. I never let my children near raw eggs or raw meat when they were young.

    • Somebody Somewhere

      I am thinking they can handle that all very well ….

  • mrscindeed

    We eat raw egg but only from our own chickens.

  • Sdrettigs

    Our 15-month old climbs up on a 5 gallon pail and hands me glasses from the dishwasher as fast as I can put them away. She insists on helping and wouldn’t want it any other way! 

  • http://profiles.google.com/anij34 Jolene O’Dell

    ~They are at such a great age to emulate what we do so it is the perfect time to have them help with chores~  

  • Ronald Stauffer

    That’s neat!  We have given our 2 year olds and 3 year olds a small spray bottle filled with water, and a wash cloth and taught them how to “clean the windowsills.”  They LOVE this job!  They can’t hurt anything with a little water, and it’s fun, and sometimes they even get a window sill clean, after a while!  But most importantly they feel like they are making a valuable contribution to the family.  They are learning to work and contribute!

  • Lisa Salazar

    I love to see little ones helping. My 14 month old son loves to help me empty the dishwasher. Of course, he also loves to help rearrange the dishes while I’m loading it, and really gets a kick out of trying to climb inside, but it’s all good!

  • Doris Bissell

    Oh, how Precious he is & He was doing a great job too! “Smile!” Gosh, sure reminds me of my two boys Steven & Jerry {4 yrs apart in age} Helped me alot When my late husband Ben was in the hospital in September 1978 after His 25 ft fall off a scaffold while working inside the MSR “King Tut” pyramid concrete building at Nekoma, North Dakota {less then 1/8’s a fraction from completely breaking his neck. He broke the left elbow & wrist, Had severe facial abrasions on right side of his face having broken 3 teeth that went into his upper jaw & severe concussion & severly bruising of the right leg, lower back & hip up to the shoulder & neck region & badly torn up right elbow as well My boys were then ages 8 yrs & 4 yrs old They were doing our dishes, sweeping the kitchen floor & vacuuming the house, You name it They were Helping Momma even when Daddy came home a week later. They still helped me alot “Bless Their Little Caring Hearts!” So, Give that little precious a “Big Bear Hug” for me! Love & Hugs Always in Christ; Doris Janke Bissell, an avid fan of the Jeub, Heppner, Bates, Duggars, Sentmans & Arndt Families!