I love Parents magazine’s new feature with a “Teach your Child to…” each month. Last month, my big kid tackled tying his shoes. This month, it was Veronika’s turn, teaching my 2 year old (yes!) to wash the dishes, or at least the rudiments behind the task.
Don’t expect sparky plates to come out of this activity; the idea is simply to introduce your toddler to this daily chore, and have some family fun in the kitchen while you’re at it. To start, I cut a regular sponge into a smaller piece; this was much easier for her little toddler hands to hold! Veronika seemed mesmerized the moment she spotted a mini sponge waiting for her right next to mommy’s bigger sponge!
I filled the sink with a few dishes (think rubber spatulas or small metal pans for this first foray into the task, not breakable items), and then stood Veronika up on a chair so she could reach. She felt like such a big girl!
Together, we started washing the dishes. I showed her how to add soap to her sponge and scrubby-scrub-scrub on the dishes.
After each one was sudsy, we gave it a good rinse, which she loved!
She also loved squeezing the sponge to make more dish soap bubbles, and then rubbing those bubbles all over her hand. “I need a rinse!” she would tell me each time she got soapy.
When the dishes were clean, I showed her how to set them aside in the drying rack, and her lesson was done. But Veronika wasn’t finished! She loved her little sponge so much that she wanted to scrub down the chair, too.