Whose Turn is It Anyways?

Posted on March 25, 2013. Filed under: Cleaning, Family, Organizing | Tags: , , |

choreHaving six children means that there is more than enough hands to go around. So why when it’s time to have those hands work for YOUR greater good, they seem to develop arthritis or some other sort of de-generating disease? Well the common phrase that usually goes around my house is “But I did it last time!” As a parent your first reaction is, I don’t care who did it last time! You do what I tell you to. Yes you can get them to comply using this method but it is totally draining for you and the kids. You’re ready for the kids to clean up. But first, you must assign tasks out and then go through, what I like to call, the re-assignment period. That’s when the kids negotiate amongst themselves and barter chores off; often times the youngest get the short end of the stick. Does this sound familiar?

So what can you do to make sense out of the chaos? It’s simple. Out of the chaos evolves the chore chart. A white wash board makes for the perfect chore chart. It’s reusable and can be easily changed. List out all the chores and rotate each child’s assignments each day. This ensures fairness as the hardest chores are rotated evenly. It also gives the kids the opportunity to learn how to do all the chores that need to be done. If you have older and younger children, partnering them up may be the best way to make sure the difficult tasks are done accurately. Our chore chart has worked out better than I ever imagined it would. The kids eagerly finish their chores as soon as they get out of school; without me having to tell them what to do. When kids know what is expected from them, it gives them a sense of empowerment. While they may not have the choice of whether or not to do the chore, they can choose when they complete their tasks. This simple sense of control actually makes the chores easier to do.

Implementing a chore chart means a united cleaning unit, right? Well, for the most part. The biggest complication has been the kids’ unwillingness to want to stray from the chart. We all know that flexibility is important to successfully running a household. Sometimes kids become reliant on the chart and if a need arises that requires them to stray from their normal tasks or take on extra, they are not happy. It is important for you to stress that the chart is merely a guide so that everyone has a task but there could be times when you may have to veer from the chart.

The one week I forgot to do the chart proved to be a complete disaster. The kids felt lost and were calling me to figure out what they should be doing. So as I complete this blog, I have just updated the chore chart for the week. While many of my ideas are short-lived; this has definitely proven to be a great resource for our household.

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