I think we've finally done it. We've implemented a chore plan in our house. In the past we've had a lot of failures when it came to a system that actually worked. Usually it was my fault because I had a hard time being consistent with it.
It's been 2 weeks and we're still going strong--that's a record! I've seen so many awesome chore plans out there but I chose this one for now. It could very well change in the next little while but for now, we're sticking with it.
I have looked at that chore plan on Confessions of a Homeschooler for awhile but I changed it a bit to work for us.
I printed off a bunch of the chore cards and picked and chose which ones my family would use. I laminated them and also a few blank cards so I could write in some of my own.
So here's what we do: Every night before I go to bed, I decide what chores I need the girls to do the next day. I really like the flexibility of this since we don't run the dishwasher or do laundry everyday but when we do I can add in those chores: empty the dishwasher, fold and put away laundry, dust, etc. Each girl has a few chores that stay the same everyday then they usually get 1-2 more that changes daily:
Natalie: make bed, take a nap, pick up dirty clothes, pick up family room
Cyrena: make bed, read for 20 minutes, pick up playroom, wipe the kitchen table
As they finish their chores, they move the card to the ALL DONE! row.
Then right before bed, we check to see which chores are done and if they are ALL done they pick a sticker to put on their reward card (what Natalie is holding). If they haven't completed all their chores, they do not get a sticker for the day. The reward card has 6 spots and when it is full they get to pick a prize ($1 store items, gum for Cyrena, etc).
There are also "Best-'bee'havior cards." For our family, you can trade in 3 full reward cards for a bee card. The bee card gets them things like: ice cream with dad, a playdate, cooking with mom, etc. They can also earn a bee card if they meet their goal which I will explain below.
Another thing that we started are GOALS. It's hard for them to hear, "just be good, ok?" They need something more specific than that. So for Cyrena we picked a behavior she really needed to work on. She was constantly 'roaring' at Natalie and making her scream. It was becoming a bad (and not to mention annoying!!) habit. So her goal this past week has been, "I will not roar at Natalie" She's been amazing and has met her goal as of right now. We're going to officially evaluate tonight. She is so excited to earn her bee card!
Natalie's goal was "I will poop on the potty" since that's been her biggest struggle lately. And she's done really well! It's so funny because sometimes while she's playing I will hear her repeating "I will poop on the potty....I will poop on the potty"
It's been great to have a visual reminder of their goals, we refer to them very often.
The third and final thing we started are screentime tickets (the pink tickets next to their names). It's been hard for me to keep track of how much screentime (t.v. and computer) they are getting. It's harder for Cyrena since she is home all day and doesn't nap. I figure she is awake and home for about 13 hours a day and it's hard to keep a 5 year old entertained that long! The tickets are in 30 minute increments so as they watch a show (or Cyrena plays computer) we just move a ticket down to 'all done'. I also purchased a small digital timer so Cyrena can set it while she's on the computer. That has made a huge difference! She uses it for her reading time as well. And she also uses it when I say, "I'll play with you in 5 minutes"......it can work against me. :)
Ok, does that sound overwhelming?? It's really a lot simpler than it sounds but it's hard to get it all out of my head into comprehensible text. :) I know most of you already have an awesome plan in place. For right now my girls need something tangible and broken down like this but I'm sure eventually we can go to some kind of checklist.
How do you handle chores at your house?