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Young children want their mom to help, not dad


My 4-year-old son and 6-year-old daughter only want my wife to help them with their morning and evening routines. I would like to help them brush their teeth, read a book, etc., but they refuse. Both my wife and I are becoming frustrated.



One of the best ways to get young children to follow instructions is to make a game out of it. Consider making a “job jar” that contains all the chores that must be done in the morning and evening. Have ​“mommy and daddy chores” on one color of card and “kid” chores on another. Explain the plan at a family meeting. 

Ask your children for input on job ideas. Every morning and evening each family member pulls a duty from the job jar. You, for example, might draw “help with brushing teeth.” Your son might draw “put cereal on the table.” If applicable, this will be his or her job for the entire day.  

Praise your children when they comply and do their jobs correctly without complaint. Explain to them that a family is like a team who pulls together to pitch in and help.