11 Old-School Chores That Used to Be Common For Kids But No One Does Anymore

In the not-so-distant past, children were expected to pitch in with household chores as a routine part of growing up.

These tasks were not only a means of contributing to the family's well-being but also instilled valuable life skills and a sense of responsibility.

However, many of these traditional chores have fallen by the wayside.

Let's take a nostalgic journey back in time to explore 11 chores that were once commonplace for kids but are now increasingly rare today!

1. Hanging laundry on the clothesline 

Back before everyone had dryers, kids often helped with hanging clothes outside to dry. It was a simple job but an important one, especially when the sun was out.

Children would take the clean clothes, sheets, and towels, and use clothespins to attach them to a line strung up in the yard. 

It taught them to be patient and to make the most of sunny days. Nowadays, with dryers in almost every home, this chore isn't as common as it used to be.

2. Washing dishes by hand

Back in the day, before dishwashers became common appliances in households, washing dishes by hand was a regular chore.

After meals, it was up to the kids to roll up their sleeves, grab a sponge or scrub brush, and tackle the dirty dishes.

They'd fill up the sink with warm, soapy water, scrub away the food residue, and rinse everything clean.

It was a simple but necessary task that taught responsibility and the value of cleanliness. Nowadays, with dishwashers being a staple in most homes, this hands-on chore is less common among children.

3. Polishing shoes

Back in the day, kids were often tasked with keeping their shoes clean and polished.

Whether it was for a special event or just for school, ensuring shoes were shiny and presentable was a common responsibility. 

This chore involved scrubbing away dirt, applying shoe polish, and buffing them to a shine.

It was a routine task that instilled a sense of pride in appearance and taught kids the value of taking care of their belongings. 

4. Dusting and sweeping

Back in the day, it was typical for kids to help with dusting and sweeping around the house.

This involved using a duster or broom to remove dust and dirt from surfaces and floors. It was a routine task to keep the home clean and tidy.

However, with modern cleaning tools and technology, such as vacuum cleaners and Swiffer dusters, these chores may not be as common for children today.

5. Tending to the garden

Back in the day, many families used to have gardens where they grew vegetables or flowers.

Taking care of these gardens involved tasks like pulling out weeds, watering the plants, and picking ripe produce.

It was a common chore for kids to help out with these gardening duties, but nowadays, not as many families have gardens, so these chores aren't as common for children.

6. Helping with canning and preserving food

Back in the day, families used to preserve food by canning fruits and vegetables or making jams and preserves.

Children often helped with these tasks during harvest seasons. They would assist in preparing the fruits and vegetables, filling jars with them, and then sealing the jars to preserve the food for later use.

This was a common chore for kids, but nowadays, it's not as common due to changes in food preservation methods and lifestyles.

7. Feeding and caring for pets

Back in the day, families used to take care of their pets together. This included tasks like feeding them, grooming them, and cleaning up after them.

It was a shared responsibility among family members to ensure the well-being of their furry friends.

However, nowadays, this practice may not be as common due to changes in family dynamics and lifestyles.

8. Running errands

In the past, kids often had the responsibility of running errands, like going to the store or delivering messages to neighbors or family.

It was a way for them to contribute to the household and learn valuable life skills.

However, nowadays, with the convenience of online shopping and digital communication, this chore is less common for children.

9. Setting the table

Back in the day, kids often helped set the table before mealtime. They would arrange the plates, utensils, and glasses in the right spots.

This was a way for them to pitch in and get ready for the family meal. However, nowadays, with busy schedules and modern conveniences, this chore is less common for children.

10. Making beds

In the past, kids were often responsible for making their beds every morning as part of keeping their bedrooms tidy.

It was a routine chore that many families expected children to do as a way to contribute to household cleanliness. 

Did you have any chores that you used to do in the past, but has become rare today?


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