. . . or at least Mom is!
We've been in serious need of a chore chart for quite some time. My home frequently feels out of control. I am only one woman, no matter how super I seem (wink wink) I cannot clean up after myself AND a big ol' family. Plus, I was sick to death of the chorus of whining I heard every time I asked someone to unload the dishwasher. I searched around the internet for quite awhile looking for a chart that would blend functionality with my desire to craft, and could offer our bland walls a little cuteness factor. I found this, super sized it for our large brood, and here is my masterpiece:
Everybody has their own little magnetic board to keep track of their chores. I love it. And the best part is, it's working! The kids have five or six regular chores they have to do daily, the basics really, the stuff they should be doing, but weren't, but now are, because it's somehow fun and satisfying to move a magnetic chore picture from one column to the other. I also assign an extra chore at least once a week (soccer days and other chaotically busy days I skip the extra chores).
Here are a few of the extra chores. Once they do the chores I assign, they are free to do more, with permission (Eli tried to get credit for cleaning an already clean living room, and Meilani wanted to vacuum around all the toys on the floor). I pay $1.00 a day for completing all their daily chores, and $1.00 (or more, depending on the chore) for extra chores. But who wants to dole out real money to pip squeaks? No me!
They get "Mommy Dollars!" What do mommy dollars buy, you ask? Hot lunch at school, a gift for a friend's birthday party, a later bed time, a new picture frame for Mom because I kicked the glass through one of hers (that would be Sariah), TV time, a movie selection from Netflix, a new jacket because I lost mine for the umpteenth time (Meilani), basically privileges, or stuff that I'd be buying anyway! Everything has to be approved. I still have veto power!
If I've talked with you in the last few weeks, I've probably chatted on annoyingly about my little chore chart project, seeking opinions from my fellow mommy advisers. Everyone said the same thing: my proposed system would be too cumbersome to stick to. I, myself, was reluctant to commit to this system because ultimately, I know I'm lazy. But here's what I've learned. Kids LOVE immediate payment for their hard work (don't we all!). They also complain and whine a whole lot less when they have more choices. Freedom within limits. Our system is still a work in progress, but we're headed in the right direction.