Ten Suggestions for Setting Up Family Chores
- Parents will want to set a good example by sharing the responsibility and duties involved in family life.
- Remember to consider age when assigning duties. Even young children can begin to participate if the task is short and coached. As kids get older, the tasks get harder.
- Start by listing all the possible things that need to be done. Be sure to involve the children in making up the list.
- Consider rotating assignments of chores, particularly ones that everyone likes or dislikes.
- It is helpful to decide or assign clear time frames for completing each task.
- Decide on reasonable consequences and rewards ahead of time. This discussion can include the children's suggestions as well.
- Assume you will need to provide some helpful reminders (notes, lists, charts). Kids may want to help create these reminders, depending on their age.
- Don't assume kids know or should know how to do something. Parents who teach them how to do the task, by breaking the tasks down, have much better results.
- When (not if) a chore does not get done, avoid "nagging" conversations or arguments about it. Just remind them of the agreed upon consequences and then stick with your plan.
- Parents will want to practice their plan to keep calm and in control of their emotions when working with their children. Otherwise, chores will become a real chore!
- Celebrate small steps of progress, and celebrate often!
Reprinted with the permission of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. © 2008 Commonwealth of Kentucky. All rights reserved.