As parents, we all want to build character and teach responsibility. One of the best methods of instilling character is through having a home chore system. Chores are necessary for enjoying a peaceful organized home, yet sometimes the battle of doing them seems to outweigh the wonderful results of completing them. I've found that when chore time is fun to do, both mom and children benefit.
Today I wanted to share 5 ways that our family has found to make doing chores fun:
1. Pull a chore from a hat OR photo from the phone.
While using a routine chore chart is wonderful, sometimes the routine turns into drudgery. Try switching out your usual chore tracking methods for a quick list that you cut into strips of paper. For older children, pull the chore from a hat or jar and do one at a time, until all the slips have been completed.
For the younger children, I will take a few photos with my phone and give them a free choice item from the photos. For instance, for the chore of sanitizing the door knobs, I'll take a photo of a door knob; for wiping off light switches, I take a quick photo of a light switch. Making a photo album of cleaning pics is a quick and fun idea for 3-5 year olds to choose from.
2. Make a game of a quick clean-up by using the timer.
For quick clean-ups, we often work as a team and set the timer. Everyone picks up and straightens as many items as we can in 20 minutes. Choose the amount of time according to the ages and capabilities of your children.
3. Enjoy rewards for completed chores.
Positive reinforcement is always a great way to make chores more fun. Whether you choose to reward via a special snack, extra chore money, or spending time together, rewards can be wonderful incentives for chore completion. Often when I ask for help from the children in addition to their routine chores, we spend time playing a game together or play extra time at the park.
4. Provide the opportunity to learn a new chore.
If you have established regular chores for your children, sometimes they get bored with the same old routine. Try giving them an opportunity to do a chore that they've never done before. Learning something new is always more fun than doing the same old task. I've found that they really love to try their hand at things that might even seem too hard for them to do.
5. Take an everyday game and use it while you do the chore.
One of our family's favorite ways to use this tip is to play I Spy while folding laundry together. With all the colors of the clothes (and 8 family members!), this game is fun and makes the time pass quickly while learning teamwork.
What is your favorite way to make chores more fun?