As a kid growing up Saturdays meant one thing. Waking up early and CLEANING! Gosh I hated it, but our house sure got messy with four kids and often a handful of foster kids coming in and out. I know getting us to complete our chores was pretty similar to the pain you feel when you get your teeth pulled. But there is hope! Today Gregg Murset, Founder & CEO of MyJobChart.com shares his eight tips to get your kids to help out around the house:
- Take Advantage of Kid’s Love of Technology. Why threaten to take away a child’s technology when you can use that technology to take advantage of a teachable-moment or drive home a larger message about being responsible? By using an online job chart like MyJobChart.com, children consistently log in, see their responsibilities that need to be done, register the completion and find out their rewards. Your kids will find themselves motivated by seeing their bank account grow or positive notes from mom and dad.
- Let Kids Earn Money to Support A Special Charity They Pick. Help your child find a charity or cause they want to support, and tell them by finishing tasks around the house, the money they earn will go as a donation. The donation could be made once a year, every month or every week, depending on your child, but if they can see how their hard work helps animals, another child or to help find a cure, they will be more engaged.
- Parents/Grandparents Match (Double) Any Savings or Donation. Make an agreement with your kids that whatever they earn, you (and even grandma/grandpa) will match the dollar amount to go toward a charity or that new toy they have been wanting.
- Connect Helping Around the House with a Special Day or Additional Activity Time. Sometimes all a child wants is some special time with mom and dad, maybe a trip to the zoo, to see a movie or to go out to eat at a favorite restaurant. Have a standing arrangement that every week or month, if assigned tasks are completed properly, you will grant them one wish to do something.
- Allow Overtime. Just like mom and dad, give your kids the chance to work overtime to earn more money. Even though some jobs have a clear ending, find other jobs that your children could go above and beyond if they request. Examples include working in the garden, painting a room, doing advance homework or helping neighbors with their projects.
- Go on Strike. If you give your children something to do and they skip out on it, do not do it for them. Even the most stubborn teen will take notice when they run out of clean laundry.
- Allow Help. During summer break or on a long weekend give your kids a large project to complete and let them invite friends over to help. While painting the backyard fence or shoveling mulch for the yard might not sound fun to you it could be a blast for a group of kids. Especially if you offer to host a pizza party after the work is done.
- Create Trades. Competition runs rampant between siblings so take advantage of it. If one of your kids is assigned a task and he/she doesn’t want to complete it, allow for trades between kids. The child who wants to trade his/her task can give up the reward tied to that chore to a sibling in exchange for the sibling doing it. If one sibling is willing to put in all the effort, the others will quickly take notice and want to contribute when they are not getting any of the rewards.
What tips do you have for encouraging your children to complete their chores at home?