The Chore Chart

We started offering our girls allowance when they went to Pre-K and understood what coins were.

We had a chore chart on the fridge and as they grew older the chores went from simple things like pick up your toys to unload the dishwasher or change the laundry.

At the end of the week we paid a quarter for each sticker on the chart. The more they worked, the more they earned. With my kids it never added up to more than $5/week.

Eventually, the girls got used to doing chores and we reinforced the value of being a part of a family and working as a team and the chores became something that was just done out of respect. We explained that they are rewarded for their good works all the time by the all the extra things they get to do like going to the movies, having sleepovers, paying for sports and activities, buying decorations for their rooms, new clothes, etc. They shouldn’t need a quarter to pick up their clothes; they should pick them up because their parents worked hard to buy them for them.

Often you can hear me say, if you want to swim you will have your room clean before we leave at 12:00. They are given a deadline and an expectation, but a monetary incentive is not required. Or, "We have a lot of fun things to do today. As soon as the dishwasher is unloaded and your clothes are folded we will get right to it."

Now we are working on just doing it because they were asked, no incentive at all--monetary or fun. "Girls, please set the table." "Please, take out the trash." That's enough. No coins, no bribes. You live in a nice house, with nice things, and you are fully capable of helping out. We are now working on creating servant hearts in our children, not fuller piggy banks. I want them to help out of love and respect for their parents not what will they get in return.

Obviously, they still need reminded from time to time, but in general plan was successful. I now trust our laundry more with my 9-year-old than with my husband! And my 7-year-old can fold clothes nicer than me!

Our next goal: chores done before they have to be asked or reminded. Might be a dream but we are on our way!

About the Author...
Rachel Phillips
Riding horses, going to the lake, beach vacations, little league sports and church activities is how the Phillips family spends most of its time together.

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