Check "make a chore chart" off of my list of things to do...
I don't know about you other parents, but I have grown weary of hearing myself remind my children to do their chores. And then I look like the "parent who exasperates her children" because it appears as though I'm nagging when, in reality, they are just not doing what they're supposed to be doing without being told to do it.
I'm currently reading, Life Skills for Kids: Equipping Your Child for the Real World (affiliate link), and in this book the author talks a little about chore charts. By using a chore chart, the responsibility of remembering to complete their chores is totally shifted to the child. It's a way to keep them accountable. And, hopefully, a way to eliminate parental "nagging."
In the book, she had suggested a similar style of chore chart as I made. I knew that I wanted a pocket system. I believe that she had suggested a quick and easy way of constructing one using envelopes - one row for "to do" and one row below for "done."
But I wanted something a little more durable (and attractive) so I decided to make a fabric rendition of her chart.
I simply cut squares of fabric, stitched hems so they wouldn't fray and then stitched the squares pocket-style (leaving the top unstitched and open) to a placemat I had. If you know how to make basic straight line stitches on a sewing machine, this little project will be extremely simple for you. And if you rather not mess with that, use a heavy duty cardstock or posterboard and buy envelopes to glue on. You could even get fancy and make pockets out of scrapbook paper and mount them to a pretty piece of 12 x 12 scrapbook cardstock.
The top row of pockets are the "to do" pockets. The bottom row are the "done" pockets. The letter between the two rows are the first initial of each child's name (I used adhesive backed foam letters to keep it easy.) The lone pocket way on the left holds random chores and chores that are not necessarily done every day.
Chores are written on popsicle sticks. Or you could write them on paper and laminate, but Brad and I agreed that it would be much easier to make new ones if we just had to mark a popsicle stick rather than borrow the laminator from my friend.
Each child has sticks that are specific to them. For instance, Ian has feed the rabbits, dry dinner dishes, practice piano, etc. Sergei has unload dishwasher, wash dinner dishes, burn garbage. Lily has feed Molly, set table, clear table.
The sticks in the far left pocket include tasks such as dust, clean bathroom, vacuum carpets, sweep kitchen floor, laundry, etc. Those are assigned on an "as needed" basis to whatever child I decide will need to complete the task.
Then I mounted the chore chart to the refrigerator using heavy-duty magnet clips. I wanted the chart in a clearly visible and accessible area, and since the kitchen is the main "work area" of our home, the fridge was the chosen spot.
So, I am expecting that I will have to remind the kids to check the chart for a while until it becomes a habit. The "experts" say it takes about six weeks to make something a habit, but at least I'm not constantly reminding them of individual chores fifty times each day.
Have a blessed day!