More kids being pressed to do chores: poll

Kyodo News

More children are helping out around the house than 11 years ago thanks to rising parental awareness of the need for discipline, a study by an education-promoting entity showed Thursday.

In a fiscal 2009 survey by the state-backed National Institution for Youth Education, 64 percent of elementary and junior high school students polled said they help out with the housework, up 13 points from 11 years ago.

The January-February survey covered about 35,000 students and parents.

The students ranged from fourth-graders to sixth-graders in elementary school, and those in their second year of junior high and high school. The parents polled had elementary school children enrolled in every grade.

The results of all of students except the high school students were compared with those from a survey conducted by another organization in fiscal 1998.

Of the students in this group, 44 percent said they always greet neighbors and acquaintances, up 8 points from the previous survey.

As for the parents, 63 percent said they assigned specific household chores for the children to do on a routine basis, up 13 points.

The increases probably reflect growing parental awareness of the need to educate their children to behave well, the institution said.

The survey also found that fewer children are experiencing nature-based activities than 11 years ago.

The portion of students who said they’d gone out to catch insects plunged 22 points to 59 percent, while those who said they’d experienced swimming in rivers or the sea tumbled 20 points to 70 percent.