31 August 2016

Start Them Young: Job Charts

Learning to be a Responsible

"The price of greatness is responsibility."--Winston Churchill
     I don't know if it is the teacher in me, or the fact that I grew up with week day and Saturday chores, but I completely believe in giving my kids jobs/roles around the house.  We don't call ourselves Team Mac for nothing!  How else do I teach my kids to be responsible?  I know so many other parents who agree with us.  Giving children jobs around the home while they are young is a good thing.  Of course they might not think so, but one day, looking back they will have to agree that learning to work hard is always beneficial.  No one intentionally raises lazy, entitled kids.

"Find joy in everything you choose to do.  Every job, relationship, home...it's your responsibility to love it or change it."  Chuck Palahniuk

    The difficulty with Job Charts and giving your kids responsibilities is being consistent with it.  I get all excited and ready to go every August, and then after a few weeks I find myself doing all the chores myself (because let's face it, sometimes it's just easier to do it yourself) and completely putting the lists aside.  I have found what helps is accountability with your spouse and your kids.  Have a quick family meeting talking about why these new jobs/roles are important and then (for the older kids) give them a list to keep in their room to remind them.  The kids can tape it to the back of their bedroom door or their desk so they don't lose it (with that cool colorful tape they have now!)  Also, start small, give your child 1-2 new jobs per week and once you have a good rhythm going then add another.

"Quit making excuses.  Putting it off.  Complaining about it.  Dreaming about it.  Whining about it.  Crying about it.  Believing you can't.  Worrying if you can.  Waiting until you are older.  Make a plan & just do it." -Nike

  Some jobs/roles I find important to start with first are in the kids bedrooms.  Making their beds in the morning and cleaning up their toys before bedtime should become daily habits.  Then move to the common areas like the kitchen, dining room, and bathrooms.  

We have 4 kids so here are their ages and the jobs they are able to handle.  Sometimes seeing what another kid the same age as your own really helps.  I was recently at a women's conference and the speaker was listing jobs her kids did and it was very convicting to me and eye opening because I had become very slack in this area.

Julia is 8 years old: Makes her bed, cleans the kids bathroom (puts away toothpaste/toothbrushes, replaces toilet paper rolls, wipes down the counter, uses the dust buster to vacuum), Julia also knows how to sort laundry and fold laundry, she clears the dinner table and empties the dishwasher at nighttime, she also watches the kids when I am in the shower or when the kids are in the back yard playing, and she feeds the chickens.

Mark is 7 years old: Makes his bed, collects all the trash from the bins in each room, brings trash to the curb, sets the table, clears the table, sweeps dining room floor, feeds the chickens, and Mark folds the laundry (THE BEST) and puts the laundry on everyone's bed for me.  Mark also watches the babies when I take a shower.

Micah is 3 years old: Learning to make his bed, he puts away his shoes inside the closet, puts dirty clothes in the hamper, puts the napkins and silverware on the dinner table.

Amelia is 2 years old: We sing the clean up song and she puts her toys away, Puts clothes in the washer machine (front loader), she also is going to put cups on the dinner table starting this week

"It is not only for what we do that we are held responsible, but also for what we do not do."--Moliere

  One of the major reasons I am writing the post is to get myself back into the groove of holding my own kids accountable for their responsibilities in the home.  I figure if I am taking the time to write about it, I need to actually do it consistently!  And after writing this I realized how lax I have become with Micah and Amelia.  Julia and Mark were doing so much more at their ages and I really needed to step it up with the little ones!  

Quick Recap:

1. Family Meeting
2. Give 1-2 Age Appropriate Jobs
3. Print a List and tape to the back of their bedroom door
4. Be consistent 
5. Once a rhythm is established add another job

Awesome Responsibility Quotes Link

Age Appropriate Jobs For Kids Link


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