I read this article the other day that stressed teaching kids to help out once they reach one year. They mentioned this study that shows young kids know what it means to help out:
"A 2006 study backs up this idea: Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology discovered that toddlers as young as 18 months already have full-fledged qualities of altruism and cooperation. The way they demonstrated this was simple. A researcher would "struggle" to hang up a towel with a clothespin or stack up a pile of books. When he dropped the clothespin or tipped the books over, the toddlers would race to pick up the clothespin and hand it back, or restack the books. But when the researcher made the same mistakes without struggling — that is, without looking like he needed help — the toddlers didn't budge. They understood what it meant to be helpful."
So today, I am folding Saben's clothes and I think to myself "oh, I should make him put his socks into the drawer." Nice and easy for him. So I ask him, show him and he just stands there. He picks up a sock, but won't put it in the drawer, even though I know he knows what I want. So I remember this article and I pretend to be having a really hard time lifting the sock to the drawer. Lo and behold, he gets this huge grin on his face, and immediately drops the sock in the drawer and proceeds to put all the socks into the drawer, smiling and proud of himself.
Absolutely nuts I tell you.