Chore Charts and Calendars
The key to staying organized with the myriad of household chores that need to be done is to build a chore chart and calendar. This will serve two purposes. It will help ensure that no chores are slipping through the cracks, and it will assist you in knowing who is supposed to do what and when. If you have an incentive program, like an allowance, tied to your chores, a chart and calendar will also help you remember who has some money coming their way. The calendar does not have to be super complicated -- just do whatever helps to keep things manageable and easy to track.
Start by writing out a list of every chore in the house and who is generally responsible for it. Once you have your list, you can dole out other jobs to balance out the chore list. Simply doing the list might help you see how much or little each family member contributes. Once you have a comprehensive list, divide it into tasks that need to be done daily, weekly and monthly. So you'll have three lists of chores, with a family member's name next to each one. Then, all you need to do is chart it out in a calendar style format and explain it all to your family in a way that doesn't start an uprising. You can write it out if you want, or use a computer spreadsheet. There are also helpful chore calendars that are already formatted and available for free on many home organization websites.
Remember that your goal is to get some help around the house, so don't be too overbearing with your calendar. Your family may rebel if you come across too strong with your new "type-A" system. Attach some incentives to the list and encourage your kids to work at their own pace for the reward. You might find that your children really want that allowance and before you know it, they're doing chores and marking it on the calendar without even being prompted. That's when you know that your plan has worked and you can bask in the glory of your clean and tidy house.
- "Age Appropriate Household Job Chart." Workingmom.com, 2010. http://www.workingmom.com/age-guidelines.htm
- "Donna Young's Chore Chart Maker." Donnayoung.org, 2010. http://donnayoung.org/household/fullsize/xls-chore-chart-maker.htm
- "Motivated Mom's Calendar." Motivatedmomsplanner.com, 2010. http://www.motivatedmomsplanner.com/
- Sullivan, Patricia. "Chores and Children." Life.familyeducation.com, 2010. http://life.familyeducation.com/jobs-and-chores/parenting/36443.html
- "Track Your Chores with Style." Chorecharts.com, 2010.http://www.chorecharts.com/