This is a follow up to an earlier question about a post apocalyptic ‘civilization’ created only from those under sixteen, and not many of them. Thus, anyone who can work is needed. What tasks might be assigned to children from 3/4-7/8 or so? They need tasks associated with making clothing, food (both farming animals and crops, and cooking), building, items such as dishes and candles for use and trade, and have to take care of even younger babies and toddlers.

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    $\begingroup$ Where do they get the material to make clothes, buildings, etc? $\endgroup$
    – RonJohn
    Dec 8, 2018 at 21:34
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    $\begingroup$ Three and four year olds aren't going to do much but require supervision by older children. The 5-8 year old kids can feed the chickens, harvest eggs, collect firewood, all with supervision. I'd research "child labor in the 18th and 19th century". $\endgroup$
    – RonJohn
    Dec 8, 2018 at 21:38
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    $\begingroup$ Even if this is a follow up question, you should explain the world with more detail. If you did it elsewhere, please include a link. Children or not, possible tasks depend on so many things like climate, culture, needs, ... The list goes on and on. You might be better off stating what you think are suitable tastks and someone could evaluate them. I think any person is able to come up with a couple of options. You even had a couple of ideas like making candles ... Otherwise be way more specific, e.g. how did children help with harvesting crops $\endgroup$
    – Raditz_35
    Dec 8, 2018 at 21:49

1 Answer 1


Children of that age range are tremendous imitators, and while their motor skills and strength might not be up to par with that of older children, they should be able to complete relatively simple tasks of a repetitive nature, though, as @RonJohn mentioned in the comments, there would almost certainly have to be some level of supervision from older children to ensure they stayed on track. A few tasks come to mind:

(These specific suggestions are assuming your group is in a sort of woodland type area, with a fair variety of plants.)

  • Cracking nuts for food supplies - Tedious, and not well-suited to those with greater specialization, but not that difficult. a rock to bang on, and a basket or container of some sort should suffice.
  • Continuing in the vein of collecting food, picking berries is a great job for younger kids, provided they can be persuaded not to eat them all.
  • Tending crops, if the survivors have managed to grow any, including, but not limited to, tasks such as: planting seeds, watering crops, and harvesting any grown crops. (Weeding might require more concentration than would be common to children this age.)
  • Carrying firewood, and collecting brush. This is a simple chore that kids have been doing in many cultures for ages, and requires no great size or strength, but is still very necessary.
  • The more nurturing children could play with any toddlers and babies in the group, and make sure they stay within a safe area.
  • If the survivors are trying to craft items such as rope, younger children would be good for tasks in the vein of twisting together strands of bark, or other materials.

It's also worth noting that young kids, with their curiosity and ability to notice little things, make great collectors of things like nuts, or any item that became of value to the survivors.

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    $\begingroup$ Seeing as my thing is set in Texas, specifically the center of pecan country, the idea on nuts is good. The other thing I thought of was helping spin wool and other thread. $\endgroup$ Dec 9, 2018 at 0:59

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