FREE DOWNLOADABLE CHORES & TASKS CHART
Why charts you say? come read along...
When my eldest started school, I noticed that he always wanted to know what his day would entail. Yes, kids ask a lot of questions but these were not just the regular repetitive questions, he wanted to know step by step details as to what is day would like from the onset of wake up to breakfast time, after breakfast, in between lunch etc. Some of his typical questions were, "What are we doing today? What's next after breakfast? What are we doing after we finish playing? What time is bed time? and so on. It was a little frustrating having to respond, remind or to keep him up to date step by step.
This is when I realised that he needed something visual to help him know where he’s at throughout the day and to help him feel in control of the whole daily process. It was at this point that I started introducing charts and set tasks in our family. The charts and tasks have changed across the years as it all depended on their current needs and age at the time.
The notion of assigning chores and will depend on what you believe in and what is best for your family. I personally believe that there is no right or wrong as long as it’s safe for the children and suits your family. The best end result is when you tailor something great and, “You Do You!”, if it works for you and your family then do that!
I utilise both chores and tasks separately as explained below:
CHORES = for us chores are things that should be part of their day-to-day activities and should become good habits such as making their bed, brushing their teeth, tidy up their bedrooms, help in the kitchen etc.
TASKS = for us are things that they can work hard to build up to culminating in receiving a reward or getting paid. These are the big-ticket jobs such as taking out the rubbish, helping with gardening, vacuuming the car, budgeting etc.
Now we don’t need to make things harder than it sounds, some of these things they are in fact taught in school but most of this work ethic is achieved through repetition and practice at home.
Chores & Tasks help teach children life skills. We began to use chores and tasks as a way to help and teach our children and develop life skills. Even though they are young now they won’t be kids forever! When they are ready to move out, they will be able to apply the life skills they grew with in their everyday life such as doing laundry, budgeting, cooking and so on.
Chores & Tasks help teach children the 3 “RRR”. Responsibility, Respect & Self-Reliance These regular chores they get to do daily such as cleaning their room, having breakfast or brushing their teeth, will help them learn to be self-reliant, responsible and respectful of the place they live in. If their task is to clean up around the house, they will learn to be more aware of the mess they make, the work that goes into maintaining it and how it effects the other members in the household. This will be keeping them in a healthy mind and body where they actually take care of themselves as well as maintaining a family home. Do not underestimate the power of teaching them responsibility, it will boost your children’s confidence and they will take pride in being mature enough in taking care of themselves.
Chores & Tasks help teach children teamwork. Teamwork is a big one in our home. As a family starting from me and my husband, we always have seen marriage as a team effort. Where needed we both jumped in and help whether it was hubby helping me in the kitchen cooking or cleaning, or myself helping him in the garage or in whatever he needed a helping hand. We tried to model this productive teamwork for our children and wanted our kids to very much know this and to consider it just as important as we do. Each family member is part of the “team” and we are all accountable to each other and respecting each other.
Now my family is not perfect we all make mistakes and then there’s consequences and that depends on the problem and the severity, the age of the child and character. Learning these lessons at home are very valuable until they live home. At home mistakes are more easily forgiven and they’re always surrounded by love. Kids can then develop strong teamwork skills to use at school, even at the playground or playgroup and especially at work when they’re ready to enter that stage.
Chores & Tasks help teach a strong work ethic and time management skills. The traits will be very much appreciated by their teachers and future boss, so why not instil a good work ethic into your kids now while you can mould them. Looking how busy some days are and it feels like there’s not enough hours in the day and the to do list just gets longer and longer, it can be quite challenging and overwhelming! I know I hear you but don’t forget take one day at a time, one task at a time. You’ve Got This!!
The tasks will need to be approached and assigned differently for each child according to their ages. I say the earlier you start the better, it will help them build good habits early on and when in the teen years juggling their schoolwork assignments deadlines, maybe even work, in between house work and social life they will be able to set priorities and manage their time for the better.
Chores & Tasks helps the family to build a bond. I remember things from childhood, some were amazing memories and some not so good I thought back then. I remember my mum having regular deep house clean-up days, what it felt like weekly for me then haha, working the land, growing our own crops and harvesting it. Those were things I disliked at the time because all I could think of was going to play with my neighbours. But now seeing it from a mothers’ point of view I appreciate everything that she did and what she has taught me. Even though those seemed like big tasks and not fun at all, we did have some bonding memories and we have had fun along the way as well. I remember at times when we didn’t feel like doing some of the chores my parents would try and make it fun and more enjoyable.
My children respond very positively when they get praised for what they do, it makes them feel very proud and it gives them a self-esteem boost! They see how much they have grown and progressed over time. For example, my daughter will do certain tasks and come and let me know that she did it without being asked waiting to be appreciated and acknowledged for her efforts. And the reward may look different in your home depending on the task and child but in those occasions, they want affirmation and lots of love and cuddles. My eldest son when we do tasks together, he loves talking about the past and asking me about how things were when I was a child or talking about funny memories or what he wants to be when he grows up. These are bonding moments that I will cherish forever, these special memories bring me so much joy and make my heart sing.
In conclusion having a chore chart for the children is definitely a good idea, as long as it does not become MORE work for the parent and child, if done right it will work like a charm. It is important to remember that breaking old habits and to build new habits takes time, so be Be Kind To Your Self and Your Child!
You’re doing an AMAZING JOB!