Friday, 1 October 2010

Blogtoberfest Day One ~ Chores/Learning responsibility/Child Slavery

All on a par really, yeah?

Today is day one of Blogtoberfest. I am looking forward to the challenge of posting every day, hoping I ahve enough to write about!
My theme for today is Chores!

As the children grow we have tried several ways to implement chores.
It always ends up failing. Mostly because...
~ I suck at implementing them
~ I suck at reinforcing them
~ My eye twitches when I watch the child attempt to do said chore
~ It's just easier for me to do it and do it right

Yes, sorry kids, Mummy can't do everything so she tries to delegate chores, but then you all suck at it so get out the way and just let me do it.

I am getting better at this whole chore thing, but we still have a way to go, mostly on my part, I'll admit it.
I need to learn to let go, accept the children are not as good/efficient/right in doing the chore as me.
I need to take deep breaths and increase the patience when I am showing them for the 24th time, how to do a chore.
I also need to remind myself to remind them, as much as I don't want to, that they need to do the chore.

In theory all children can do some chore. My 2 year old can pack up toys, put clothes in the laundry hamper and even help me do the veggies for dinner each night.
This is something I remind the older kids whenever they start whining about chores and what a great mummy I am throwing the fact their 2 year old sister can do more than them.

My eldest 4 children know how to clean their room. We have been doing it for years now, it's not that hard. Pack away toys, books and any clothes on the floor that were worn for two seconds. That is it. Really, it could not be any easier. You'd think so anyway,right.

We have been in this house a few months now and are settled in. Our chores don't really change much day to day. Our day in chores goes something like this.

~Eldest son is on dishwasher duty. He is to empty the dishwasher every morning before breakfast
~ After breaky everyone puts their dishes in the sink.
~ I wash dishes and wipe down kitchen
~ Lunch and dinner is same as breaky
~ After dinner we have the whinging/crying/yelling/crying/begging hour (most of that by me) One cleans down the table then sweeps the floors. Eldest stacks dishwasher. And everyone cleans up the loungeroom.

This is how it goes on a good day.

Something we don't do, is tying an allowance to chores. I know it works for other families and is an incentive for kids to complete their chores, but in our family my kids are immune to incentives.
"Clean the floor and I'll give you some chocolate" "Yeah, um, I'm going to pass on that Mum"
Little buggers.
There are also times when while they may not do the said chores every single day, they do help me in other ways and with free will.
My 8 year old will often come in my room when he hears the baby is awake and take her, telling me he will play with her while I have a shower.
My ten year old last weekend made me eggs on toast and brought them to me in bed. (While these may not be under the 'chore' umbrella, they are things that help and are very much appreciated)

While we don't give an allowance, we do want the children to know we appreciate their help in running our family. Every few months hub will take the kids out and they will pick something they really want. Something they have been thinking about or talking non stop about.

What do you do in your family? What chores system or rhythm do you have? Do you have all kids of all ages help out, or is there an age where they start?
Id love to hear about it.

1 comment:

apwool said...

We don't really enforce or implement chores as such, but try to con the kids into helping us out ROFL.
Kidding, sort of.

I've tried to go all hard arse and be like, do this NOW! And it doesn't work. Ask nicely, doesn't always happen.
So I gave up.

However, as they get older they have started joining in on things when they see me doing them, or they find certain chores (vacuuming is a great example) FUN! So we try to let them help out, but gee it can be hard to watch, like you said.

The perfect example I can think of with this in mind, was actually happening this afternoon when I was first reading this post. I was stuck sitting with Sunny having booby and the washing machine was going mental because I didn't balance the load properly. Both Jet and Indy went to the washing machine and pressed the button to make it go again, several times each, without me prompting them. I know its not really a chore, but hey, the fact that they kinda know how to use the washing machine is awesome!

Another thing is them making their own food, Jet has started confidently making his own toast and spreading it, I love it... That tiny amount of independence feels like a huge weight off my shoulders some days when I have Sunny clinging onto me or I am just having a shit day.

I will stop rambling now ;)