how we tackle weekly chores
I don’t know about you, but tackling weekly chores in our household seems to be an ever changing, mind boggling chore all in itself.
Who’s with me?
Like so many, I’ve tried just about all the methods out there. Chore charts, chore tags, checklists, flip this – switch that, printed, hand drawn…. EVERYTHING.
One thing I have learned is that finding and maintaining a chore system that works comes in seasons. Children’s ages change, their skill levels change, and so does their desire to work the system if it get’s too boring or mundane.
That’s exactly where we were – the season was changing and things were becoming chaotic. Time to change things up a bit.
The word *chore* always seemed to have a dismal sound to me. Explaining that we have responsibilities just flows better for us. The Bible teaches us to be responsible stewards, so from the beginning I have called them *Responsibilities*.
Galatians 6 : 4-5 (NKJV)
But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For each one shall bear his own load.
Now that our children are a bit older, I’m able to sit them down and ask them to help me brainstorm when I feel there needs to be a change or shift in something we are doing. That’s exactly what we did…. family meeting time!
We discussed the various ways we’ve done *our responsibilities* in the past and pointed out what we liked, didn’t like, and what worked and didn’t work. Much to my surprise, they wanted a list that they could check off again.
I wanted a system that didn’t take a bunch of my time to manage and maintain. A system that sort of ran itself with little planning. We also decided that we wanted to get back to zone cleaning (by room) rather than theme day cleaning. (dust Monday, floors Tuesday, etc)
Birth of the Responsibility Cards
Being anxious to get this new system (for us) working, I knew that rotation would be the answer. I did not want to spend hours creating cute checklists until I knew for sure that this new way would work.
I began brainstorming what needed to be done in each room. Determined which rooms required a bit more work and which ones could be done fairly quickly. I jotted all the rooms (and what can be done in that room) down on index cards.
We have 3 children, so I then divided all the rooms into three groups. I wanted to make sure that I didn’t put all the *more challenging* rooms together. If there was a room that needed a bit more attention (say: the living room) I pared it with a much easier room (such as the hall), and so on. After I equally divided all the Responsibility Cards – I assigned each group a color by coloring in the corner of the card. Got out my handy-dandy laminating machine and worked my laminating ninja skills. Voila!
Want To Make Your Own Responsibility Cards?
Here’s a list of what I used:
*I use the Hinged Snap Rings in the event I need to add or take away a card.
Using your monthly planner sheets, create a rotation schedule. Place the calendar in a place where everyone can see it. Ours is on the refrigerator. Our rotation starts over every Sunday. They simply look at the calendar on Sunday and switch the cards to the correct child’s hook. Very simple and takes little time and effort.
I try to plan out a few months at a time. This doesn’t take very long once you have figured out your rotation schedule.
Be sure to give them a time frame or deadline as to when you expect their responsibilities to be done. For example: our kids know that their jobs need to be done by Friday afternoon. This is a gentle lesson in time management and chipping away at their tasks.
How about you?
Drop me a comment below with your thoughts, questions, or suggestions on tackling chores in your home.