Sunday, October 2, 2011

Kids And Chores

Let's talk about chores for a second shall we?  It sometimes can feel like a  constant struggle to get kids to do their chores.  I think chores are an important part of a child's development and their ability to be able to take care of themselves when they leave the nest.  You should be training your kids for their future - their future when you are not around to pick up their things and wash their laundry.  If we as parents don't teach our kids the basics, who will??

Our kids have been doing "chores" basically since they could walk.  When they were really little, it was simple things like helping to put their toys in a toy box and helping me do things that they thought was fun.  When our girls were little they loved to do the "grown up" stuff like dust and vacuum.  Was I making my kids dust the house when they were 2?  Well, no.. but they did like to help me, and watch me do that stuff.  When they ask me why I do things, sometimes it's easier just to say something like, "because that's how I like it".  But I've come to realize that if I actually explain to them why I clean or do something a certain way that can be a valuable teaching moment.

Our daughters (age 11& 8) both have daily chores that they do.  Sometimes they complain, but for the most part they are starting to understand that one day, mom and dad won't be around everyday and this is important stuff that they need to learn how to do.  And if they don't do it right, they have to do it again.  :)

Our kids daily (Mon-Fri) chore list is below...
Homework and a snack are the first things to get done
Put any papers that I need to sign or look at from school on my desk so I see them
-just a side note on this one - I do not go through their folders and look for papers I might need to sign.  We have taught our kids to take responsibility for your school work.  If there is something they did not give me, then it is up to them to explain to their teacher why it did not get signed.  And this is something that the school helps to enforce, which I like.  Our youngest is in 3rd grade, and the teacher tells them the same thing.  They are learning to take responsibility for their things at school, so it makes my job easier at home too.
Take the dogs outside
Sweep the floors
Vacuum the floors (we have a small house, so it really doesn't take that long)
Unload the dishwasher
Load the dishwasher
Clean the counters in the kitchen
Pick up their bedrooms
Feed and water the dogs
Pack your school lunch for the next day

On Saturdays they are responsible for getting their dirty laundry to the laundry room to be washed.  I still wash their laundry, but when it comes out of the dryer, it is their job to get it all put away.  If they don't get their laundry to the wash - then they don't get clean laundry.  I do not go through their rooms and collect dirty clothes.  They are old enough to be responsible for their dirty clothes.  Some of this may sound a little rough, but Brandon and I both believe that we should be training our kids to eventually leave.  Are we counting down the days to when they leave us?  Of course not, but we do want them to be responsible adults that can take care of themselves and their families and contribute something to the world they live in.

If you don't have a chore list for your kids, I highly recommend it.  Even if you have small children.  When they are small, is the best time to start because they think it's fun and they are getting to do something that normally Mom only does.  There are so many cute chore list ideas out there too.   Make it fun.  And don't feel like you have to give your kids an allowance if you are going to have them do chores everyday.  But if you do give them a regular allowance turn that into a learning experience as well.  How much will they save?  How much can they spend?

Take the opportunities as they come and use them to teach your kids... They will be better adults for it.

I would love to see some of your cute chore lists if you have any...

I will have a bedroom makeover post #2 coming shortly.  I have the materials I need to make my headboard and a few other things.  Now, it's just a matter of finding the time to get them done.  :)

Have a great Monday everyone!



mom24girlz said...

I am laughing a little because I seriously JUST printed out their weekly charts to hang up(a day late b/c they are supposed to go up Saturday night.) I LOVE chore charts! & now Elise(2) has her own little sticker chart too, right with her sisters. They are sometimes excused if they have an activity & maybe more homework on a certain day, but they have to get a parent to "excuse them" & check it off. I get all our charts from They have charts for EVERYTHING! :) Have a good week!

mom24girlz said...

Oh, and I am with you on the laundry! Oldest daughter has gone through a week without her favorite shirt because it was hiding under the bed & she didn't get it to the laundry pile on Saturday!

Christa aka The BabbyMama said...

I need to get on this. My daughter is 2 and a half, and I have to figure out what she'll have the patience for. At the moment, she's not any good at cleaning up - I've tried - but I guess it's just practice!

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