Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Works-for-me-Wednesday: The "Mom, I'm Bored" Edition

Well, I'm not sure how much fun the kids are going to have with this by the end of the summer, but for now, they are quite pleased with themselves.

Over the last couple of months I've been irritated by my kids' attitude that the world revolves around them. I've also grown tired of a wicked case of the "gimmes" that surfaces whenever we are out shopping. So I decided to use the summer to accomplish three things: instill a work ethic, teach them about money, and give them some life skills.

Now, the kids have always been expected to work around the house but it is usually just whenever I ask them to do something, not necessarily a set list of chores. That has all changed beginning this week.

Every day they are expected to do 7 daily responsibilities like: make bed, tidy bedroom, get dressed, take vitamin, brush teeth, brush hair, and do some type of reading or math workbook pages to keep their skills sharp over the summer.

Then, each day they are assigned an additional 3-4 chores. Here's a sampling of the chores: clean out van, clean bathrooms, take out trash, collect and sort laundry, swiffer kitchen floor, clear table after dinner, set table, wash windows, wash out their brother's baby pool, and water the flowers. As needs arise, I will add and delete chores each week.

If they complete all their chores with excellence, without grumbling and in a timely manner, I give them 10 tokens for the week to use in the Mommy Store (we'll come back to the Mommy Store in a minute).

If they want to earn more tokens, they can select a Paying Job to do only after all their other chores and responsibilities are done for that day. This week the paying jobs are weeding all the beds, washing down the front porch and going through all the toys, sorting them and putting them back where they belong. They can earn between 3 and 5 tokens for each of those jobs. Again, these jobs will change each week based on the needs of the house.

Then on Fridays, the Mommy Store* will open. They may use their tokens to buy TV time, Computer time, gum, and other small trinkets. Or, they can choose to turn in all or part of their tokens for cold, hard cash. Each token is worth $ .25.

I'm using the first two weeks to work along side them and teach the correct way to clean the bathroom or to sort laundry. The girls have also already figured out that if they work together on some tasks they can get done a lot quicker.

Oh, and if they decide their still "bored." Well, I've got a few special jobs for those occasions too. Non-paying, of course.

**In the spirit of full disclosure, the idea for the Mommy Store came from Six in the Mix a few years ago.

For more Works-for-me-Wednesday ideas, visit Shannon at Rocks in my Dryer.


Classic MaMa said...

Chores are great. Scarlett has a set of them that she is expected to do without complaining. Now, if I could just manage to do mine without complaining, we'd be fine. :)

Randa Clay said...

Great plan! I especially like the part about no complaining in order to get the tokens! :)

Marcia said...

Brilliant idea - I love it!

Tracy W said...

We started a similar system last summer, with pool time and weekends free of jobs as incentives. I like this idea and am going to play around with it a bit. I made a spiffy job chart (functional and aesthetically pleasing to fit my decor!) and am brainstorming some "summer time tweaking" that should be in place in the next two weeks.