How to set chores for your kids
If you’re one of the countless parents trying to juggle work and parenting, we hear you! Keeping kids occupied, the house in order while meeting work deadlines is no easy feat. Setting chores for your kids can help lighten the load. You might find that your kids actually like to be involved.
How can I encourage my children to help out with chores?
One observation that’s recently taken me by surprise is that my twin 10-year-old boys suddenly want to help with domestic duties. Naturally, there are still occasional moments of protest and unbridled tantrums (I don’t think they ever go away). However, they have started to voluntarily tidy their room. Even picking up the vacuum cleaner. I’m still recovering from the shock.
They are realising the importance of co-operation. That mum can’t do it all (nor does she want to). Everyone needs to pitch in and contribute.
Here’s some ideas and tips to get kids to help create a tidy and peaceful living space for the entire family.
How to set expectations for chores
Children can easily lose focus and getting them to stick to their weekly chores can be tricky.
Take 15 minutes to have a family meeting to set your expectations for the week. Use the discussion to:
- Distinguish daily tasks and chores (For example: Making beds every morning is a daily task, while tidying their room is a weekly chore)
- Give them options in their weekly chores list. They can choose which ones they want to do each week
- Set minimum number of weekly chores that need to be completed
How to make chores fun
Letting kids know that it’s all about teamwork keeps them involved and builds a sense of responsibility. Telling kids how helpful they are makes them feel valued.
Some parents may not like to hear this but it’s time to let go of perfection. We need to remind ourselves that as long as the job is done, it’s good enough. Having some fun music in the background is also a winner.
Here are some strategies that have proved successful in our home:
- Time limits:
Before my head explodes from the lounge room mess, I round up the kids and call for a “10 minute tidy”. Setting the alarm, the kids need to put all their toys, LEGO and books away within the designated time. No dawdling, otherwise it’s a 10 minute extension! Lucky for them, it’s never come to that.
- Dinner time tasks:
Food is a great motivator for kids to help. As I cook dinner, I designate one twin to set the table. The other clears the table afterwards. I’m still working on how to get them to do the dishes without creating a soapy mess.
- Teamwork makes the dream work:
Late Sunday afternoons are set aside for a big family weekly clean up. While the adults deal with the kitchen and dining room, the boys are in charge of the lounge room. They vacuum (which they surprisingly love), do the dusting, put away books and toys. We also turn up the music full volume!
If there’s one thing parenting has taught me, it’s how to be a shrewd negotiator. If my kids want an extra hour of television or screen time, there’s a designated chore that needs to be done first.
Whether that’s picking up all those annoyingly sharp LEGO pieces off the lounge room floor or putting books away back in their rightful shelves, there’s always some tidying to do before they get to do something fun.
How to reward chores with pocket money
Allocating pocket money will not only motivate kids to get those chores done, it also teaches them how hard work can bring great rewards.
Offering additional pocket money for doing extra chores can be great encouragement for kids to save money. Let them know that the more they save, the more they have to look forward to when they’ve saved enough to buy that new bike or game they’ve been wanting ‘forever’.
Pocket money made easy with ZAAP
ZAAP’s card, wearable band and/or keeper gives your children the freedom to buy what they want with “Tap and Go”. Whether it’s to order a lunch treat at the school canteen or buy the latest Pokémon cards, ZAAP is the perfect contactless payment solution for kids.
Even if your child is prone to losing items, especially something valuable, ZAAP is safe and secure to use. Both the card and wearable band are PIN protected, reducing the risk of theft. ZAAP also provides parents with transparency and control whilst having full visibility of your kids spending within the ZAAP App.
Transfer instantly or use ‘Set and Forget’ pocket money payments:
ZAAP is supported with an interactive app which has a Parent Account and a Child Account. You can choose to set up ‘Set and Forget’ payments or transfer one off payments when extra chores are done or momentous sporting or academic achievements need to be rewarded.
‘Set and Forget’ is a convenient payment functionality which allows you to transfer funds from your ZAAP Parent Account directly to your child’s ZAAP Account. The payments can be made weekly, monthly, whatever you choose. Just set and forget.
Handy tip: Make sure you have some funds in your Parent Wallet. It’ll make those top ups an easy, instant transfer to your child’s savings account. No more carrying cash for them!
Your family doesn’t have to live in complete disarray when it comes to household chores. Adding some fun and incentives to set chores not only keeps kids busy, they learn that hard work leads to great results.
Click HERE to set your family up with ZAAP today. Better yet, for a limited time only, ZAAP Mastercard Pocket Money Card is FREE (RRP $9.95)!
About the Author:
Grace is a freelance writer with over 25 years experience in business, having held senior
roles in marketing, finance through to sales.
Graduating from the Australian National University, Grace spent 10 years working with
multi-nationals in Asia. She is multi-lingual, fluent in Japanese and Bahasa
On returning to Australia, she then carved out a successful career in financial services, IT
In addition, Grace has run her own small business focused on issues such as parenting, financial
literacy and digital security.