News Flash: Chores are good for children!
That's right... still true today! Doing chores around the house is good for your child... research has once again proven what our parents already knew! Children helping run the household results in a well-managed home, and also a healthier child.
Teaching your child to do chores on their own can be an enjoyable and rewarding experience for the whole family. Learn what to do… and just as importantly what NOT to do.
...and you might as well have fun with it like we do here!
Specials!We are offering great deals on case quantities of both the I Did My Chores Original and Magnetized versions! Click on the "Product Specials" link on the menu to the left side of this page.
I’ve created this list of 7 mistakes that parents (like me!) said they made when trying to get started. I hope this helps you.... I wish I had something like this when I was searching the web for help!7 (+1!) mistakes parents make trying to get kids to help
- No planning
Typical quotes from these parents include: "We did not plan anything upfront, so everything was ad-hoc, and we ended up getting overwhelmed, confused and drowned in our own chore system." Avoid this mistake by planning your chore system.
- Expectations set either too high, or too low
"We had set ourselves up with the wrong expectations for our household and ended up frustrated with it." Avoid this mistake by starting small and building. Then you can more easily get a feel for what you should expect for each child (and for you).
- Picked the wrong chore system"We could not find the product that really "fit" our family." This could be described as chore-chart fatigue. I understand. Usually it's the parent who gets fatigued the most! Avoid this mistake by choosing the right chore system.
- Inconsistent in our implementationParents said, "we were very inconsistent in our implementation across the kids, so it turned into a 'that's not fair'-fest". You know that all of your children are different, and there will need to be basic adaptations made for each, but the system in its essentials should remain pretty consistent across your children. You can help to avoid this mistake by looking at the different age-appropriate chores and rewards. Age-appropriate chores and age-appropriate rewards, and by reviewing the relevant research.
- Did not adapt and grew out of it soon"We seemed to grow out of it and did not adapt it as our child matured." To avoid this pitfall, you will need to add new variety to your chores and to your rewards on a regular basis. Probably tweaking it every 3 months or so and revamping it with new stickers, chores, rewards, etc each year on their birthdate(s). Review the age-appropriate chores, and the age-appropriate rewards for some help and ideas.
- Lack of follow-through"We did not follow-through with what we said, so our child lost motivation." This is tough, but you must accept responsibility to be accountable to what you said you would do. If your deal with your children was to distribute rewards on Saturday night and allow your kids to "redeem" their rewards (whatever they may be), then you must do it. If your deal was that every chore that does not get done gets a reward deduction, then follow-through on that too. This takes work! But at least you are more of a manager than a "do-er" at the end of the day! If you must re-negotiate the deal, then do so with the child.
- Hey, we're parents! We're tired!"We were so exhausted (being parents of young children!) that we failed to keep it up effectively and we (the parents) let it slide." This is the most significant factor that contributes to all other mistakes. It is unbelievably draining raising young children. But if I had the answer to this one, I'd be on the beach somewhere letting the cash roll in! Personally, we made some hard decisions in our household to limit the number of sports/activities we choose to do, as well as how many "good" things we take part in. It's still super hard. But as a good friend of mine said once, "sometimes the good gets in the way of what's best. Protect your time at home from all the things that wear you out.
- Bonus: We are our own worst enemy "The 'adults' in the house undermined it." I decided to add this one because I've seen it more often than I'd like to admit. One parent, usually the mom, decides to commit to the idea, but either the husband, or the grandparent, or someone is not "bought into" the idea. So it completely disintegrates. We as parents must be united in dealing with our kids, otherwise they are masters at divide and conquer. Look at this page and understand what you are dealing with, then you might review the relevant research to help convince your spouse, parents, whoever, that this is the best thing for your child.
This site is dedicated to helping parents to evaluate, select, implement and sustain a successful chore system for their household.
Join us in the journey! We do not have all the answers, but we can at least share our experiences and learn from each other. Contribute your experiences and ideas to this community of like-minded parents who care about equipping their children to be productive members of society (starting with their immediate household!).