The end of the school year is upon us, which means more time with the kids! Summer also means more free time for kids. If you’ve been thinking about how to give your kids more responsibility, this can be the perfect time of year to ease them into some new, more helpful habits.
This summer, create a chore chart for each of your children. This can be as simple (marker, ruler, and paper) or high-tech (Excel spreadsheet) as you want.
Here are my suggestions for successfully enlisting the help of your children this summer:
1. Brainstorm age-appropriate chores for each child with the help of your children. You’ll be surprised by what chores they want to help with, and including them in the process will give them a sense of ownership (and hopefully prevent resistance later!)
2. Assign each chore a “payment” amount. In other words, make at least some of your kids’ allowance contingent upon the completion of chores to teach them responsibility as well as a bit about the connection between work and money.
3. Create a separate, easy-to-read weekly chore chart for each child. Make the chart colorful and include space beside chores for the allowance amount (i.e. “clear table after dinner ($.75)”).
4. Post the chart in a high-traffic area like the refrigerator door.
5. Mark finished chores with stickers.
6. Add up the stickered chore amounts at the end of every week. Enlist your children’s help here again for extra-sneaky math practice:)
This kind of easy summer activity can open up all kinds of conversations about the value of taking responsibility for your family’s home as well as what it means to make money and plan out how best to use it.
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