After reading the FlyLady's Sink Reflections, I have started putting together some chore lists and cleaning schedules for my home. I decided to start with a chore chart for my children! We have twin boys who are in first grade this year. It is possible to have toddler or preschool-aged children help with household chores, but I decided to come up with a chore chart that my first graders could easily follow. This chart may also be appropriate for young children of other ages also, it is up to you to decide what types of chores you want your 6- or 7-yr-old to do.
One tip I got from the FlyLady's book that I thought was really useful is that if you are particular about the way your house looks and like things done in a certain way, DON'T assign chores to your child that they are not capable of performing to your satisfaction. If you know you are going to be re-doing a chore that your child has done, don't give that chore to your child to do, it is better to do it yourself. There is nothing wrong with feeling this way, you just don't want to set your child up to fail. Have him do tasks that you will both feel good about when they are completed.
My boys haven't had to do a lot of chores up until now, so I decided to go pretty easy on them at first. I want them to get up in the morning and get themselves dressed. Yes, this task needs to be on my children's chore chart! They also need to take turns letting the dog out in the morning and giving her food and water.
After they get home from school, they need to do their homework, then later before bed they need to get their pajamas on, pick up their dirty clothes and put them away, brush their teeth, and pick up their bedroom before bed.
As extra chores to earn a little extra money, they can help with the laundry (soon to be a regular chore), and also help clean up after the dog in the yard.
My goal wasn't to overload them with chores. My goal was to get them into a daily routine that both they and I could be comfortable with. So far they have been very compliant. They like checking off their chores on their new chore charts and even more enjoy getting their allowance at the end of the week. So far I haven't given the option of whether or not they have to do their chores, they just have to do them. So they always get their allowance.
For the next couple of years they will be getting $2 a week for their allowances. Probably doesn't have to be that much, but I want them to have something to look forward to at the end of each week, and so far it is working. They like using their money to buy candy at the gas station!
You can download the chore chart I made for my boys. It is in Word format. To change the child's name just right-click on the name and change the text. If you laminate the chart or place it between two sheets of contact paper you can put it on the refrigerator and mark items off with a dry erase marker.
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