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on chore charts, the buddy system, and how my kids are starting to earn their keep.


the kids, earning extra money by sorting cans and helping todd return them.

on friday, i mentioned the kids' chore charts, and today i thought i'd give you a glimpse of how it works at our house and what kind of jobs they're expected to do.  not at all that i'm an expert, i just sometimes like to see how other families do things, and figured maybe some of you are similar.

every day, the first thing i do in the morning is present the oldest two kids (ages 6 and 5) with their clipboards.  their early morning clips include the following:

*make bed
*get dressed
*put away jammies
*clean up room
*brush teeth
*brush buddy's teeth
*bring board to mommy

on mondays, they also deep clean their room, which involves pulling all of their toy bins out and making sure everything is in its proper place - no duplos in the dress up, no random toy cars stuffed under the bed.  (they only have a few boxes - duplos, dress up, vehicles, and toy knights, and they do this every week, so it usually doesn't take too long.)  on fridays, i have them strip their sheets so i can wash them.  as for the 'buddy' thing, we've instituted the buddy system in certain situations: atticus is responsible for finneas, penelope is responsible for laurelai.  the big buddy brushes the little buddy's teeth, buckles them into their car seat, and holds their hand in parking lots and stores if i don't have a free hand.

after breakfast, they are given fresh clips.  both are expected to:

*clear dishes
*wash hands and face
*return to table for bible time
*ask for a job (this is usually picking up the downstairs, taking out the compost, straightening the couch, emptying the dishwasher, etc.  whatever needs to be done at the moment.)
*bring board to mommy

additionally, penelope is responsible for:

*wiping the table after each meal
*wiping the bathroom with a cleaning wipe on M, W, F
*picking up the entryway closet
*dusting on T, Th
*folding laundry on tuesday

atticus is responsible for:

*vacuuming under the dining room table after breakfast each day
*vacuuming the living room rug on M, W, F
*wiping the bathroom with a cleaning wipe on T, Th
*putting on his eye patch
*folding laundry on tuesday


they have three opportunities each day to bring their boards to me to check (before breakfast, after breakfast, and after lunch).  at each check, if i determine they've done all their jobs well (completely, and without complaining or dawdling), they get a sticker for their sticker chart.  when one row of five stickers has been completed on their chart, they can choose three dimes or three chocolate chips as a reward.  penelope always chooses chocolate chips, atticus always chooses dimes.  are you shocked?  

they each have a set of three jars, labeled Give, Save, and Spend.  if they choose dimes as their reward, they just put a dime in each jar each time.  

with atticus' work ethic and his consistency in choosing dimes, i've taken to calling him Moneybags.  his jars are crazy full.  penelope's belly is crazy full of chocolate chips, even though todd has told her repeatedly that it wouldn't take her long to save up enough dimes to buy her own bag of chocolate chips.  but you know penelope.

anyway, it seems involved, but this has seriously saved my sanity and has given the kids some structure they seem to like.  it does make the mornings take longer - i usually plan for school to start 1.5 to 2 hours after i first hand them their boards (that includes breakfast time and all of the above responsibilities).  but they really don't complain, and i'm loving the fact that taking care of our home is starting to become a team effort.

3 comments :

the jersk. said...

this is seriously amazing.

todd said...

i love having the kids help sort cans, plastic and glass and then coming along with me to Walmart to redeem them. it is a fun daddy date and great to get some face time with the two bigs.

Lissa said...

This is a great resource! Thanks!