At the beginning of the last school year, I created some chore charts for the boys. We tried check-off lists, we tried moving the chore title from the "ToDo" column to the "Finished" column. All these "extras" just took up more time and one was honestly just one more thing to take care of. Instead, I opted for a single list for all the boys. They go in order every day and they do the chore together if it is at all possible.
I have found that doing the chores together result in less whining and complaining. We've even ended up with some "inside jokes" from working alongside each other so much. :) I wouldn't say the chores are fun, but they are at least tolerated and they get done.
This year, I plan to update the chart with a few more extra items since they are a year older, but in the meantime I thought I share what works for us.
Here is their every day chore chart. This is where they start each morning:
Take Vitamin, Clear their place from breakfast, Unload the dishwasher, Brush teeth and hair, Make beds, Pick up toys throughout the house, Fold towels and put clean laundry away, Hug your Mom, Find your shoes.
Below that are the boys' individual chores: Will feeds and waters the dog, Nathan opens the blinds and empties the compost, and Witt puts the couch pillows on the couch (because they always end up on the floor) and makes sure the cabinets are closed in the kitchen.
At the end, are the daily chores.
Monday: Clean the Sunroom; Tuesday: Grocery/Errand Day; Wednesday: Trash; Thursday: Remove Sheets from Bed; Friday: Floors (my chore)
When the boys are at "Brush Teeth & Hair" on the EveryDay chart, they are in the bathroom (hopefully! LOL!). So while they are in there, I have this chart posted on the back of the bathroom door. Here are their bathroom chores:
Brush teeth, Put brush & paste in drawer, Wash out the Sink, Brush your hair, Put dirty laundry & towels in the basket, Close the Closet doors, Flush the Toilet and Close the Lid, Close the shower curtain, Make sure there are hand towels handing neatly.
Referring back to the EveryDay Chart, the chore after "Brushing Teeth" (which we could also sneakily call "Cleaning the Bathroom"), is "Make Your Bed". So they head to their bedroom (which they all share). This is the chart that hangs in their bedroom:
Get Dressed, Dirty Clothes in the Basket, Hang up clean clothes, Close dresser drawers, Make your bed, Close the curtains on your bed (they have bunk-beds with curtains), Put books away, Close the Closet, Take dirty clothes to the laundry room
Even my 5 year old (who was 4 when we started this chart), knows what every picture means and which order to do his chores in. It's not that huge of a deal if they go in a different order, but the routine of it all seems to help them remember to get it all done.
And, yes... I still have to get after them to keep going. Especially the 5 and 6 year old who seem to always be off in their own little world. :) Will is going to be 10 next month and he just zips on through.
What chores do you have your children do? What kind of system works for your family?