Child Labor
We work them around here. They don’t earn their keep, and they’re not always cheery, but they work. They are paid in food and shelter and really great birthdays. And when other kids visit their faces light up and they squeal at the opportunity to help reminding us all how great we have it.

It has been a process to make a system that works for everyone–animal and human. There are still some kinks to work on, but it’s better everyday and the more accessible animal care is for the kids the more capable they feel and act.

Here’s how it happens:

First, they march (and sometimes run) up to the shed.
They fill each scoop.
feeding the animals with kids

They pull the wagon.
permaculture
They deposit each scoop in the appropriate bowl or trough or tube or bucket.
farm girls

They pull the wagon back up to the shed, close the door and they come in for breakfast. 

And everyone’s happy.
feeding farm animals
farm chores
They also gather eggs, empty dishwashers, put away clothes, clean their room and help in other ways too.
Do your kids have chores?

4 Comments

  • Joy Posted October 8, 2013 1:07 pm

    Oh yes. Chores are one of the most important things you can teach children, I think. Mine are even old enough to help mow the lawn, empty compost (from the barrel into the garden), etc.

    • school house oils Posted October 9, 2013 5:56 pm

      yes! I have a feeling we are always underestimating what they're actually capable of doing…

  • ErikaandMike Hiltz Posted October 8, 2013 3:39 pm

    we are just getting started with chores with our 31/2 year old. Trying to get them geared up early for our transition into homesteading when we eventually buy a property of our own to farm. Our 2 year old likes helping "clean up' too. Our oldest sets the table, helps feed animals, "helps in the garden", puts dishes away (reachable ones) and cleans her room. She is also responsible to clean up her space after art time.

    • school house oils Posted October 9, 2013 5:56 pm

      yes–great idea! I'm glad we did give a lot of responsibilities before we moved out here so it wasn't all that shocking. But, chores take up a good portion of our day now, I'm beginning to understand how they passed all that time in the old days! It wasn't tv!!

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