Advertisement

What strategies should I use to maximize chore success?

Michele Borba
Psychology

Here are parenting strategies to maximize chore success:

Start early. The earlier you expect your kids to take an active role in helping around the house, the easier you’ll find it is to get them to lend a hand. Even kids as young as three years old can help out.

Announce expectations. If you want your kid to be helpful and a contributing family member, then just plain expect him to help out and willingly lend a hand. Hold a family meeting and announce your new expectations. Expect groans and moans.

Specify assignments. There are many ways to assign chores, so find the solution that works for your family and then stick to it. Each week hold a brief meeting to review assignments. Here are different approaches:

* Assign three simple daily chores and one more time consuming weekly chore

* Assign one easier chore (emptying trash) and one harder one (washing dishes)

* Your child is responsible for her personal possessions (clothing, toys, and bedroom) and one household duty as a contributing family member

* Your child chooses one chore he enjoys; you assign the other task

* Your child chooses the one task she would like to learn to do that week

Allowances and chores: After reviewing a lot of the new research, I say chores and allowances should not be tied together. But the latest view–and mine–is that kids should be given a weekly allowance to learn money management skills and stick to a budget. Kids also should be just expected to do chores and lend a hand in the house without pay. They need to realize they are part of a home and that cooperating and helping out is just something you all do together. Wherever you fit on the “allowance philosophy,” do be consistent.

Set deadlines. Chores should have specific time limits (“by bedtime” or “before Saturday”) instead of saying they must be done immediately.

Make chores matter. Give jobs where kids can feel they are contributing to your family. Teach tasks to tweens that will help them handle life on their own in just a few years.

Use reminders. Chore charts that show job assignment and completion dates are helpful. Nonreaders can “read” their chores responsibilities with pictures or photographs. Those charts also reduce having to give reminders.

Chunk tasks. Break down each task into smaller more manageable parts until your child knows what to do on her own. Be explicit about what you expect.
The Big Book of Parenting Solutions: 101 Answers to Your Everyday Challenges and Wildest Worries

More About this Book

The Big Book of Parenting Solutions: 101 Answers to Your Everyday Challenges and Wildest Worries

Today show's Michele Borba's cures for difficult childhood behaviors In this down-to-earth guide, parenting expert Michele Borba offers advice for dealing with children's difficult behavior and hot...

Continue Learning about Parenting

6 Reasons Your Grandkid May Need the ER
6 Reasons Your Grandkid May Need the ER
Babysitting your grandkids can be one of the most rewarding experiences of being a grandparent, but a fun trip can quickly take a turn if the little o...
Read More
What activities can I do with my children to encourage a healthy lifestyle?
Johnston-Willis Hospital - HCA VirginiaJohnston-Willis Hospital - HCA Virginia
Parents should agree what type of lifestyle goals they want to instill in their family while priorit...
More Answers
Embarrassing Questions You Wish Your Kids Wouldn’t Ask
Embarrassing Questions You Wish Your Kids Wouldn’t AskEmbarrassing Questions You Wish Your Kids Wouldn’t AskEmbarrassing Questions You Wish Your Kids Wouldn’t AskEmbarrassing Questions You Wish Your Kids Wouldn’t Ask
Every parent is going to face an embarrassing question they’re not quite ready for. Check out these questions you might hear and smart ways to answer ...
Start Slideshow
What Are Driving Distractions for Teens that Are Likely to Cause an Accident?
What Are Driving Distractions for Teens that Are Likely to Cause an Accident?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.