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Lynda Loveland: Chore chart

Posted August 1, 2012

Lynda Loveland

Say hello to my little friend! After far too many “need to's”, as in “we need to do a job chart” we finally got ‘er done.

My husband and I decided we needed to stop bellyaching about always cleaning up everything ourselves and put the kids to work. They’re old enough to help and they can earn money to buy their own stuff!

We’re in the middle of week two and so far, so good. The house is noticeably cleaner!

The hardest part was teaching the kids the right way to do things. For me, it’s always just been easier and better to do it myself. They may not be doing quite the job I could do, (which is very hard to let go) but, it’s getting done and it’s getting done better each time.

Here’s how it works: Every day the kids are responsible for making their bed and cleaning their room. In addition to that, Monday through Friday, they have one rotating chore a day plus one day a week they have two chores. They each get $1 a day for completing their chores. (They’re only paid Monday through Friday. We figured that’s all we get paid for!)

If they don’t do it in a timely manner or do it poorly, the dollar goes into a community fund. At the end of the week, the kids who did their jobs every day, get to split the community fund. The kids can also earn their dollar back by successfully completing their chores AND doing extra chores on top of that.

All three of my kids have lost a dollar, once. That’s all. They did extra chores to make it up because the thought of losing toy money was too much too handle.

Why in the world didn’t we do this sooner???

Lynda is the mom of three and co-host of Mix 101.5 WRAL-FM's Bill & Lynda in the Morning. Find her here on Thursdays. Find her everyday on her Facebook page.


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  • lec02572 Aug 2, 2012

    We have used this for all three of our grown children and we had fun doing it. The only problem now is they are all married and gone. Now when I hear, "We need to do ... something," it means I'm about to get stuck doing something. I think when the kids left the "we" got lost somewhere.

  • americaneel Aug 2, 2012

    letscare...It is a forum and people post their opininons on it. Should I check with you first to make sure it is ok for me to post what my thoughts are?

  • this is my Screen Name Aug 2, 2012

    I don't think there's a problem in paying kids for their chores. As adults we get paid for the work we do - when it's outside the home. But the kids also need to learn the value of the money they are receiving as in, once they spend it on something frivolous, it's gone. But we were expected to participate in keeping the house clean, dad's shirts and hankies ironed, do dishes. And learned to cook some meals. Parents do their children a real disservice when they don't teach their children how to be responsible in every aspect of their growing up years.

  • lasm Aug 2, 2012

    It always amazes me that this generation of parents act like they have discovered something that no other generation had. What is so surprising that kids should have chores and how well it works in the family life? And making your own bed and cleaning your own room-that you messed up yourself? Up until the last generation, almost ALL kids had chores (most did not get paid for it; although, I don't see anything wrong with a small payment)and were responsible for cleaning up behind themselves. It's called "personal responsibility and discipline". I made my bed every morning, cooked supper every day, cleaned, swept and dusted the living room every weekday, washed the supper dishes once every 3 days (which included sweeping afterwards) and ironed all the clothes for 5 people (and we ironed EVERYTHING in those days-without air conditioning in the summer). I am a better, neater, cleaner, more orgainized person for it. Thanks, Mom and Dad!

  • letscare Aug 2, 2012

    americaneel - can you please let us know the name of your book and where we can purchase it? Since you've got this parenting stuff all figured out, I'm sure you've got a book out, right??

  • BaseBallMommy Aug 2, 2012

    we recently started this for our children but we refer to it as "contributions to the family" The only mention of money was that if they do over and above what is on their lists. So far this has been great for our family.
    I also started a daily, weekly and monthly chart for the adults. Since we have been doing this everything is much easier to handle.

    Great job!!

  • americaneel Aug 2, 2012

    Teaching the kids to help out by paying them? Lesson learned by the children is I would love to help with the chores if mom and dad pay me.

  • Scubagirl Aug 2, 2012

    I just have to say, what you are doing with your kids is AWESOME!!!! I'm so sick of parents who do things 'because it's easier & less hassle' rather than getting the kids to do it. More parents should do this with their kids, regardless of how old they are now. Congrats

  • Killian Aug 2, 2012

    Oh gosh...and I just realized I typo'ed your name. I am so sorry! This is what I get for multitasking. =)

  • Killian Aug 2, 2012

    Linda - want even better "buy in" from the kids? Add you and your husband to the chart. You don't get paid, but let them see the stuff that you're responsible for as well, and that you make the effort to get it done on time instead of letting it slide.