Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Chores, Chores, Chores

I am conflicted. She’s old enough to be doing chores, but we’re too disorganized to organize the chores. I nag clean up your room when I can’t walk in there anymore. We say do your homework every night before dinner. Brush your teeth seems to be a chore; shouldn’t it be ingrained by now?

We tried a printable blank chore chart I found online, and got as far as printing and laminating it and writing some chores in with a dry-erase marker. And it’s been forlornly stuck to the fridge ever since, unheeded, chores unchecked.

Since I am extremely fond of TeuxDeux for managing my own lists (a/k/a chores), I thought that an online tool might help for the kidlet - in other words, if it were something more interactive than just a printed chart. Lo and behold, MomSelect put out a call for reviews of a online resource for goal tracking, chore charts and to do lists. Timely, so I checked it out.

Goal For It lets you make customizable charts, which you can then use online, or print out. There are lots of available choices for chores (Eat My Vegetables), and you can make more on the fly if you need something specific (Feed The Corn Snake). Then, as the week goes by, you can click off the completed chores.

It makes a cute chore chart, it’s free (and no, we don’t have a corn snake, Kyla does).

I have a couple of caveats to report. You need to sign up for an account in the Goal For It online community in order to use it - and I need another online community like I need a hole in my head. Your child can’t use it (unless they’re over 13); a child’s chart “belongs” to a parent’s account. So, either you have to print it out so the kid can mark off her completed tasks, or you have to go on-line and do it for her - and frankly, I don’t love that. What I’m looking for is something that will help my child take ownership of her tasks, and check them off herself as she goes - and that kind of means that we need something stuck on the refrigerator, which means we’re back to print-outs (until Apple introduces a fridge with a built-in iPad).

That’s okay. The Goal For It print-outs are fine and dandy. Maybe someday we’ll actually use them.

This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.


Liz Miller said...

Hmmm...We're thinking about upping our son's responsibilities in the house. This may be a good way to start.

leanne said...

I'm in the same boat -- child is old enough, but I haven't gotten organized. I keep thinking I really should do a chore chart as it would certainly help with the organization factor. Just haven't gotten there yet :)

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

I think doing chores is THE most important thing a kid can do--a handwritten list on the fridge has often sufficed for us.

Anjali said...

We get them to do chores the old-fashioned way--we nag them and don't pay them for their work. I nagged a lot the first year they started doing chores, but now when we say "clean your room" it gets done almost immediately. They also regularly fold and put away laundry, load and unload the dishwasher, pick up toys, unload groceries, and help with dinner.

Here's one tip I discovered that works well for the younger kids when first starting out with chores-- don't say "clean your room," say "pick up all the stuffed animals and put them away." Then, the next day, say "pick up all the books off the floor and put them in the shelves." The chores are less overwhelming, and seem more doable.

De said...

After a week of rain just past, I am seriously considering "breaking" the Wii, as my kids' obsession with Super Sluggers is making me bananas. However, there is one useful angle: my son will do anything in order to get play-time. I even only have to tell him once. I wonder - does Nintendo have a chore chart on the Wii menu? There is an idea!

Heide Estes said...

We have a magnet board from Melissa and Doug. It has lots of pre-printed chore strips plus some customizable ones, and enough "good job" magnets for nine chores a day, seven days a week. The current list: get dressed, make bed, take meds, brush hair, brush teeth; turn on Spike the lizard's lights, water plants, feed the dog. This summer, he's going to start putting away his own laundry. He also has to put his clothes in the hamper at the end of the day and clear dishes off the table after meals. I'm gearing up to having him put away his own clean laundry -- that will start after school is out, when there's a little more time.

Julia said...

Read this: