Posts tagged with: chores

Goal for It

Back in January I did a series of posts on chores. Recently I learned of a great website that fits in great with the topic of chores and has applications for young children all the way up through college age kids. This website is Goal for It. Goal for it is very user friendly, automated and personalized.

Parent register for an account and follow a simple process to add a child and the chores and goals for that child. You can even set up “Moolah” points. With “Moolah” points your child earns points (which you have assigned) for each goal reached and then the “Moolah” is deposited into their “Moolah” bank. The child can spend their “Moolah” on items you have set up for them in the “Moolah” bank. At the end of each day you and your child log onto the Goal for It website and mark off the completed goals. This allows you time to discuss any items that weren’t completed and praise your child on their accomplishments.

For college age students and adults, Goal for It has a separate goal setting area. Parents can track goals for their college students who are hundreds of miles a way. You can also set personal goals and join the social network on Goal for It for inspiration and accountability.

Goal for it offers a lot and the best part is…it is FREE! Yes, free. Personalized and highly functional as well as free. Check out Goal for It and then come back here and let me know what you think of the site. I love your comments and enjoy your feedback!

If you missed the chore posts earlier this year, I’ll post the links here for you:

The Why’s of Chores The When’s and What’s of Chores The How’s of Chores To Pay or not to Pay

Chore Chart Giveaway

Photobucket For the last week we have talked about chores. I now want to give you the opportunity to win a chore chart kit. This is a creative kit made by Top Line Creations. The kit includes two 12″x12″ die cut sheets with pictures of chores, one blank chore chart with room for 5 chores, cardstock stars, and step by step instructions to complete your customized chore chart. The completed chore chart is 10 3/8″ X 12″. When this was available to purchase it cost $10.00.

What do you have to do to win?

1. Leave a comment on this post letting me know one thing you learned from this series on chores. Make sure you leave a valid e-mail address in the comment.

Bonus Entries

3 Entries for twittering this contest-post a separate comment with the twitter url in the comment.

3 Entries for Stumbling this post with a review-post a separate comment with the stumble link in the comment.

3 Entries to subscribing to my RSS feed post a separate comment letting me know you have subscribed.

The contest runs from 1/11/09-5:00pm ET on Thursday 1/15/08. The winning comment must meet the rules above and will be chosen by .

Chores To Pay or Not To Pay

Paying for chores is probably a bigger decision than that of having kids do chores. As in everything, there are 2 sides to this one. We have done it both ways.  We used to pay for chores but we haven’t paid for chores in the last 8-9 years. When trying to decide if you should pay for chores or not you need to ask your self a few questions.

Luckily, some of theose questions you have already answered earlier in this series. What is your philosophy behind having your children do chores? Is it just a learning tool-to teach needed life skills and responsibility? Is it because you don’t have time to do it all? Is it because you had to do chores as a kid so your kids should have to do them too? Is it because you are all a part of this family and we all have to help take care of our home? What is your chore philosophy?

If your number 1 reason for having your children do chores is because it is a learning experience then don’t pay them. Do you pay them for doing their homework or practicing piano? I hope not. If you are having you children do chores because you can’t quite afford a cleaning lady; then pay them. They are offering you a service you would otherwise hire someone else to do. Do your kids do chores because you had to do chores as a kid? or Do your kids only do chores as punishment? Then you need to re-evaluate your reasoning before moving forward. Are your children doing chores because they are part of the family and we all need to do our part? Then don’t pay them. Do you, mom, get paid for what you do around the house? I don’t. If you can instill in them, when they are young, a firm sense of family pride and responsibility-then they understand and willfully (on most days) do their part.

When we first started our boys doing chores we paid them for doing their chores. If chores were not done as directed we deducted money from their pay-just like a real job. Some weeks they owed us money! After about a year of this system we re-examined our chore philosophy. We decided that, especially as a homeschooling family and a mom that works outside of the home part-time, we all needed to pitch in and do our chores, even daddy, to help our home run smoothly.

Last year the topic of chores and being paid for them came up in children’s church.  After church, the children’s pastor pulled me aside to tell me how impressed she was with my son’s conviction about not being paid for chores. She said he stood up and told all the kids in the church that everyone in the family was important and that everyone needed to do what they were able to do to help the household run smoothly. He wouldn’t want to be paid to do his chores because then he would feel like hired help instead of part of the family. Wow, I was impressed with the depth of his thoughts and the fact that he wasn’t afraid to share them.

What are your thoughts on paying for chores? Please leave me a comment and share them with me.

The How’s of Chores

So far we have covered the why’s, when’s and what’s of chores. Today we will talk about the how’s. Once you decide that it is time to have your child(ren) start being responsible for some chores, then you need to decide what chores each child will be responsible for, how you will track the chores and if you will be paying for the chores accomplished. In my next article we will discuss my thoughts on paying for chores but we will discuss the other ideas now.

First make a list of your children and the chores you want them to be responsible for. Divide the chores based on age and ability Next decide how you are going to keep track of the chores. Are you going to use a daily chore chart, a weekly chore chart? Is this chart something you are going to create yourself, buy or download? Are the children going to be responsible for the same chores every week or do the chores rotate? Don’t let these questions overwhelm you but, a well planned out system helps eliminate problems from the start. Since my boys are close in age and could do most of the same chores, I created a pocket chart. Each boy had 6 pockets. Then I created 12 index cards with chores on them. Every Sunday night I would shuffle the cards and hold them blank side to the boys and they would take turns picking cards. Those cards would become their chores for the week. (This also made them responsible for the chore selection and lessened the amount they could complain about their assignments for the week because they did the choosing.)  We have also used more traditional weekly chore charts. where they can check off a completed chore and then, when I checked their chores I could mark the chore completed.

Now, you can’t just post a chore chart on the kitchen wall and expect things to get done. As I said in a previous post, chores are not about getting your kids to do your work, they are about training your children to take responsibility for helping manage their home. I suggest having a family meeting. Explain to the children the why’s of chores and what is expected of them. Explain the chore chart and how it works.

You need to take the time and teach each chore to your children. You may even want to start with 1-2 chores each and then add 1-2 more each week as they learn the new skills. How do you want the bathroom sinks cleaned? What products and tools do you use to get the job done? I have typed out a “how-to clean” guide for each room in the house and taped it inside a cabinet door or hung it on a wall for the children to reference when necessary.

In the beginning you will have to remind your children about completing their chores. The goal is that they will successfully complete their chores without you reminding them to do them. This does take time but if you are consistent, they will succeed.

In my next post I will be sharing my thoughts on paying for chores.  What do you think? Do you pay for chores? Do you punish for chores not completed? Leave me a comment and let me know how you deal with chores in your household.

The When’s and What’s of Chores

When should my child start doing chores? What chores can they do at what ages? Are questions I am often asked by moms. Every child is different, so you need to base what jobs you give your child by what they can accomplish. You will probably be surprised though, most kids are able to do more than they are ever asked to do. A child as young as 2can be responsible for basics like putting her toys away and putting dirty clothes in the hamper. By age 3 you can add basic hygiene like brushing teeth and hair. At age 4 is when true chore responsibilities can begin.

Most 4-5 year olds can be responsible for picking up their toys/bedroom, making their bed, dressing themselves, brushing teeth, washing face and hands, helping separate the laundry, putting dirty clothes in the hamper and putting clean, folded clothes away in their drawers.

By elementary school you can add feeding pets, doing homework, practicing for music lessons, etc. By age 8-9 children can start doing the laundry, this was my boys’ favorite chore! They can also start doing more pet care at this age. They can help in the kitchen by loading the dishwasher, cleaning the microwave, washing pots and pans by hand, wiping down counters, tables, chairs and cabinet doors as well as sweeping the floor. In the bathroom they can clean the sinks, toilets and bathtub. Taking out the trash, dusting and vacuuming can also be added during the elementary school years.

Once they enter middle school they should be folding clothes and towels, mowing the lawn, learning to cook and iron. One of my goals when having my children do chores is that when they grow up and leave my house I want them to know how to care for themselves, their homes, and their families. Now that my boys are in high school they each have 1 night a week that they plan and cook dinner as well as their other chores. I was blessed to marry a man who knew how to take care of our home and I am determined that when the time comes, my boys will bless their wives with housekeeping skills.

The Why’s of Chores

The dawn of a new year often brings discussions of children and chores. In the last few days I have spoken with several parents about this very issue. Common questions parents have are: Why should my children do chores? What age to start chores? What chores are appropriate? How many chores? and To pay or not to pay. There are several philosophies on how to approach chores. Over the next week or so I am going to share my chore philosophy.

Why should my children do chores?

There are many reasons children should do chores. The most important reason a child should do chores is that doing chores teaches responsibility. In my years of teaching and working with youth, often when I am working with a student who is rather irresponsible I will ask him, “Do you do chores at home?” The asnwer is almost always 1 of 2 things. First is just, “No.” Second is, “I’m supposed to but I don’t.” As parents we want our children to grow up to be responsible citizens, I believe this starts with how we deal with chores. For a child to learn to be responsibile the parent must see chores first as a learning environment then as a work environment.  Yes, this will create work for the parent but-that’s what parenting is all about. We will cover this more in detail in my article “The How’s of Chores”.

Another reason children should have chores to do is that it actually helps them have a stake in the family. Each member of the family should be a productive member of that family and for children having chores to do gives them that feeling of “I’m doing my part.” This is true especially today. We no longer June Cleaver home all day cleaning the house in her pearls and pumps.  Many families have either both parents working outside of the home, or are single parent families. In homeschooling families when often only 1 parent works outside the home but the other parent has the added responsibility of educating the children, everyone in the home needs to pitch in and do what they are capable of doing.

In the next article I will be discussing “The When’s and What’s of Chores”. What age should children start doing chores and what chores are age appropriate.