Updated: May 13, 2020
Ugh, that dreaded word that everyone hates...especially teens and tweens!
Having a household of three kiddos in the teen/tween category, I might actually despise chores as much as they do because it means managing, nagging, tracking, reminding, and negotiating on my part which then equates to whining, arguing, and complaining on their part. 🤦🏻♀️
Don't get me wrong, my kids are great and all, but they are super busy with school, sports, and extra curricular activities so the excuses to NOT do chores is a mile long!
Long gone are those glorious days of cutesy chose charts with stickers, or the time we made an intricate (and super complicated) token system, where buying crap at the dollar store was beyond motivating and did the trick to get our kids to clean up!
As the kids have grown older, we've tried a few methods to implement and track household chores. The one that seems most families use, is to divide up different chores on different days and rotate them between kids, and then track the days/kids/chores with some sort of chore chart.
From my own family experiences, I have found with teens the three biggest problems with a traditional "chore chart"is...
1. With multiple kids in the family, it gets confusing who is suppose to do what, which in turn invariably leads to some type of disagreement. "It wasn't my day to walk the dog, I've got dishes today!".
2. A parent (AKA mostly me), has to constantly track and remind them whose day it is to do what. Which also leads to some sort of argument. "I already told you!! It's YOUR day for trash"!
3. With rotating days and chores, there always seem to be some discrepancy in the work load, which usually ends in a disagreement. "It's not fair, her job was easier than mine!"
Are you seeing the trend here in the Weber Abode... Chore Charts = Family Arguments
So I decided to ditch the chore chart altogether and try a system that is much simpler and easier.
After almost a year of our new method, I'm happy to report, it's still working and no family spats (well, at least not over the chore chart). And the added bonus is that it only takes less than 5 minutes prep a month for me, so this new technique is super low maintenance and not time consuming at all.
Ready for the big reveal?....TADA!
See? I told you it is super simple!
At the beginning of each month, I take an empty calendar template (I print mine from iCal, but you can also grab free templates online) and literally plug the kids' names in rotating days.
EASIEST. THING. EVER
So how does it work, you ask??
Each day has a "point person" and instead of rotating chores on different days to different kids, that "point person" does EVERYTHING that day.
No confusion of which chores and no confusion over which person, and best of all no arguments!! 🙌🏼
We put this bad boy (also known by the name "calendar" ) on our fridge so everyone knows whose day it is and no more confusion over who is suppose to do what. If it's your day to be "point person", you do it a ALL...walk dog, empty trash, takeout recycling, clear dishes...all household chores are your responsibility.
To be honest, at first there was some moaning and groaning (they are teens, after all) about having to do EVERYTHING on your day, but within a few days, the kids actually preferred this method because once their day is over, they get two days off! ( Not a bad deal...wish the real work world was like that!)
There are a few kinks that had to be worked when we first started using this method.
1. What about vacations??
We decided as a family, that the chore calendar is dead when we are away from home as a family, and the days that are vacation days don't get swapped or somehow evened out. So it might be that one kid gets an extra day "off" because we are on vacation. We reassured them that it all evens out in the long run. (insert long family discussion about kids leaving for college and then the youngest has more "Point Person" days in the long run...The Webers are very thorough in their efforts to make things fair)
2. What if the "Point Person" is gone or too busy to do their household chores?
If the "point person" is gone they must swap with a sibling. They are responsible for getting their replacement and figuring out which days and what job was swapped (In other words...no Parent Involvement 🙅🏻♀️).
All in all, this new method seems to fit our family better than anything else we've tried over the years (and believe me, we've tried A LOT!).
It works great for family/household chores, (like dog responsibilities, dishes, trash), but the one thing that we we are still continuing to fine tune is how to motivate the kids to take care of their own personal chores (clean room, make bed, put away laundry, keep mold from growing in your toilet... ya know, the basics).
I'm researching phone apps right now to see if that would help us in this area and tonight we are having a brainstorming discussion with our kids to see what they would find motivating (Money usually does the trick!🤑) , and I'll report back and let you know!
I'd love to hear if you have found an effective way to encourage kids to keep up with their personal chores!
Do you give allowances? Are there punishments? Do you use a chart or app to track it? I'm all ears...It takes a village to motivate a child to do chores!
Until next time, cheers to chores being done (without arguments) and cheers to you! 🥂🖤
P.S. Let's be MILF's Together! (Mom I'd Like to Friend)
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