Help with summer time 'Chore Charts'

Stay-at-Home Catholic Dad of 3… is me! (and proud to be)

Well, summer vacation from school is upon us. My boys (16 & 10)
and princess is 4.

I have made chore charts in the past but I am wanting to pick some of the best brains I know (all of you) for some sources or great ideas to make it creative and fun. I know chores are a bore but how about something fun to make it go quicker. Making the charts fun and the rewards fun too.

I need ideas, please. If it’s not fun this summer I’ll be praying to St. Matilda a lot for patience from the figity kids.

Thanks ahead of time for all your ideas.


Excellent idea… I’ve been debating doing this myself… tired of hearing all the kids did was play video games or watched TV… (Of course it’s not all they did…)

There are two types of activities kids need to do. Daily/Weekly chores and Projects. I suggest you get them some projects to do that will enable them to show a completed activity rather than just something that is repetative.

Maybe paint something. Build something. Fix things that are broken. Read the manual and demonstrate a device or function never used by the family before. Create an expectation, let them do the planning, execution and receive the praise!

And don’t forget daily exercise… maybe a field day or DDR or something.

How about calling them projects?

We actually just came up with a chore chart for my 11yo daughter. She wants to earn some $ but is very absent-minded.

Hmmm…Let me feed the squirrel that runs my brain a nut, then get back to you.

Your big fella, Moose, shouldn’t have a chore chart, but a contract, esp. if he has a license. He’s going to college in a couple years, and he needs to know, if he doesn’t already, that money and privileges are tied to responsibility. So, the three of you (Mom, boy, you) need to sit down and pound out something. Don’t worry about his part, as kids at that age are nautral lawyers. :wink: Seriously, a chore chart seems babyish for him.

The ten year old, Spike, is in another age group than Princess. You might make part of Moose’s contract to supervise Spike and Princess as they do their chores, or their chore charts. Spike would really benefit from something that works like a time card. Moose or you could sign off as Spike does the chores. At the end of the week or month, however you do it, he gets “paid” for his young labors. My girls are in the age group where this works best, and they love the time card sometimes more than the paycheck.

Princess is in the sticker age (so fun, esp. for little girls!). Every sticker could be worth a penny or nickel.

I always let the kids pick from a list of chores and I also let them choose their punishment (within reason ;)) and their reward for completing each chore. We do it almost like a game show set up… they play to figure out who picks first… and then we just go back and forth until all the chores are figured out… As we are doing this, I am charting it on a calendar…

Kids are more likely to do their chores if they get to choose and if they know the consequences…

In my house, there are three girls and then two boys and then a little girl. The older three are all in highschool, the boys are in middle school and the little girl is going into 2nd grade.

The older three girls each get a section of the house, one does kitchen, one laundry and the third bathrooms, the other living spaces are split between the bathroom and laundry girls and the dining room goes to the kitchen girl. The laundry and bathroom girls each get a boy helper, and the boys are also in charge of the trash, cleaning their room, making their beds, putting away their clean clothes, and cleaning up the yard. The kitchen is the hardest job because it is constant and that person has to help with all the meals. The little girl she is just in charge of cleaning up after herself. She has to clean up her own clothes, bring her dishes to the kitchen, clean up her toys, and help the kitchen person by Swiffer vacuuming the kitchen.

The punishment for not finishing chores during the week is that we have to get up at 6:30 on Saturday, we can’t do anything until our jobs are done on Saturday and more often than not, we get even more jobs as punishment. Saturdays are supposed to be yard days, so if we have to spend them inside doing chores, our parents want to make sure we have enough time to do both.

The house needs to be clean by the time our parents get home from work, or we have to spend the rest of the night cleaning.

The one thing that I have found that makes cleaning almost fun, is when my parents aren’t at home, we blast music like YMCA, and when they are home, I use and I-pod. Music really makes work fun.

The thing I hate the most, and I have to work on this, is when my parents ask me to do other people’s jobs. I hate it because I have rushed through mine and mine are done, but now, because I am done, I am almost being punished for doing my jobs quickly. I know this is the wrong attitude, and I am working on it, but I thought I would share that with you.
Also know that each person is different. My sister likes lists, because then she knows what she needs to get done, and then she can do it. I much prefer to be left alone, and then just asked, “Could you wash the floors and clean out the fridge this week.” sort of thing. Then I can do it when I find the time, and I am free to clean things that I see need to be cleaned.
One of my brothers is totally motivated by money, but my other brother couldn’t care less, he prefers spending time with my dad to money, so a game of basketball is his reward.

It is different for every person, try to make it fun for each person by assigning their jobs accordingly.

Also, my parents didn’t use money most of the time because they didn’t want to teach us that money was the most important thing in the world. Instead they taught us that we should do our jobs out of love for them, and out of respect for all that they do for us.

In our household, we have 2 types of chores: those that must be done on a regular basis and “extra chores for extra money”.

Regular chores are required of everyone according to age and ability. No one gets rewarded - these are what must be done to have the household run smoothly. A chart is posted on the bulletin board in the kitchen. Chores rotate weekly. These include doing the dishes, vacuuming, cleaning bathrooms, etc.

The “extra chores for extra money” allows the kids to earn some spending money. These include things like, sweeping the van, dusting the baseboards, cleaning doors, etc.

During the summer, we may work on “projects” together. Spring cleaning type things like re-organizing drawers in bedrooms and such. It is expected and not rewarded.

Just over the weekend, everyone participated in the necessary Spring yardwork - cutting grass, pulling weeds, raking leaves, etc.

As for summer activities, I try to frame them in terms of goals. I ask the children what they would like to have as a goal - improve playing basketball, learn how to swim, etc. Then the next question: How are you going to achieve that goal? Sometimes we sit down and work out a plan. It is my attempt to try to have them think long term and associate effort with results.

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