Now, I know this is not literacy related (well, it really could be if you stretched it), but I’ve had quite a few mamas ask me lately about how I handle chores. So I thought I’d post about it to show how simple, yet powerful chores can be.
Just recently, I started a new chores chart with ALuv. I did this for two main reasons- 1- I needed him to step up his responsibilities around the house (he is 6 now) and I wanted a way to keep him accountable to that & 2- I wanted him to actually SEE a dollar bill and understand how to manage money. I hate to confess this, but I use debit A LOT and he hardly ever SEES “real” money. In order to teach kids new concepts, the concrete/tangible (rather than abstract) is best; so cash it is.
I had been searching to find something to help us get better organized with this and found an awesome resource on Homeschooling Creations (I should have known to look there first)! I posted about it a couple of Saturdays ago. I use her preschool chore chart with pictures, but will eventually move on to her chores chart for older kids once he has a better grasp with reading. I LOVE Jolanthe’s explanation behind chores and totally agree with it. Amen, Jolanthe!
ALuv has 4 Morning Chores:
- brush teeth
- make bed
- sweep floor (he uses our dust buster after lunch each day on the kitchen floor)
- clean up (taking personal responsibility to clean up his own messes–any messes he makes).
He also has 3 Afternoon Chores:
- set the table
- clean up his room (before bed)/ he also has to help clean up the playroom
- brush teeth (before bed)
He DOES NOT get paid for any of these chores. Each time he completes a task, he pulls it off the chart (I have Velcro on the chart in each spot) and places it in a little container I have nearby.
Under the Morning and Afternoon Chores is a place for To Earn Chores. These are extras he can do each day ABOVE AND BEYOND his regular chores and he gets paid 25 cents for each; so he can earn a maximum of a $1 a day, if he so chooses. This is the $ amount we chose, but you could do it for whatever amount you are comfortable with. BUT his Morning and Afternoon Chores MUST be done in order to get paid for those extra chores each day.
Here are the things on his list of To Earn Chores:
- Clean out dishwasher (he puts away all the kids’ glasses, bowls, and plates, plus all the utensils)
- Pull up the trash cans from the road on trash day
- Empty the recycling into the can outside
- Water plants
- Put away his laundry (hanging up shirts, putting away shorts, underwear, etc.)
- Vacuum one room
- Wash the table/kitchen counter top at bar
These are his only options as of right now, but I will add more as I teach him how to do more difficult tasks, such as wash the dishes.
I created an extra chart, which you can download, to go along with Jolanthe’s to help me keep up with what he has earned all week, as he doesn’t get paid until Saturday. Here is how it works: When he has completed his Morning/Afternoon Chores, he (or I) check off that those are done. Each of his “To Earn” chores has a number associated with it (I wrote numbers on the little cards), which you can see in this picture,
so when he does a chore, he writes the number(s) he’s done for that day. I did this so he could simply write the number associated with each To Earn Chore, as there is not much room in that column for him to write the entire word or phrase. I hope that makes sense. On Saturday, we add up how much he has earned (25 cents for each) and we pay him in COLD, HARD CASH.
We’ve also had the talk of how we need to give, save, and spend our money; not just spend. Of course, he didn’t like the idea of giving some away, but as we got into a discussion about it, he began to see that God is the Giver and because He gives, we want to be like Him and give, too. We also gave him some tangible examples of people he knows who rely on the money we give to live. That really brought it home to him.
So, there you have it. The thing I like best about this system is that it is VERY simple, yet teaches such a powerful lesson to our kids. It’s also been convicting for me. Just yesterday, I noticed a pile of my own laundry on a chair in my room and realized I needed to be a model and put away my own clothes! Oh, the convictions of motherhood!
Thank you for joining This Reading Mama on a literacy journey!