Chore List

I hope I haven’t kept you hanging too long!

These are the chores that I let my kids choose from for their 3 DAILY Chores.

  • Swish and Swipe the Hall Bathroom
  • Reboot Laundry AM
  • Reboot Laundry PM
  • Empty Dishwasher AM
  • Make Lunch
  • Clear Table PM
  • Load Dishwasher 4PM
  • Cook Dinner
  • Clear Table after dinner
  • Run Dishwasher after dinner
  • Take out the trash
  • Sweep Kitchen tile
  • Put away your laundry
  • Wash Hand-Wash Dishes
  • Walk and feed the dogs
  • Daily Mission*

These are the chores that I let my kids choose from for their 5 WEEKLY Home Blessing Chores.*

  • Vacuum your room (x4 bedrooms)
  • Vacuum Living Room
  • Vacuum School Room
  • Vacuum Kitchen Tile
  • Mop Tile Floors
  • Take the Trashcan to the Curb
  • Take the Trashcan back to the House
  • Wash the dog
  • Clean Hall Bath sink & toilet
  • Clean Hall Bath shower & floor
  • Clean Mstr Bath sink & tub
  • Clean Mstr Bath toilet & shower
  • Mop Mstr Bath floor
  • Fold Laundry
  • Clean Kitchen Counters completely
  • Change bed sheets
  • Dust furniture in 1 room completely
  • Gather all trash and add new bags
  • Pooper Scooper backyard
  • Help with home busines
  • Help with Girl Scout Leadership jobs
  • Pull weeds in flower bed
  • Kid’s Mission*

* Credit given to the Fly Lady for use of these terms. I’ve just tweaked them to work for our family


Do you pay for chores?

We do pay for chores.

Since the children were three years old we’ve paid them a dollar per year . The 3-year old got $3 per payday to blow on anything she wanted. The 5-year old got $5. That worked well for years! 

In the last two years we’ve all joined scouting. John’s in Cub Scouts, the girls are in Girl Scouts, and I’m the Girl Scout leader. Recently, we’ve also noticed some inflation and recession signs in the economy. (tongue in cheek) So we’ve switched to “virtual money.” The kids earn their 20 coins and I credit their account with their age in dollars. We use those dollar credits to pay for our recreation activities: scouting events, joining choir, clothes they need for activities like cheer uniform, movies, etc. It keeps them from blowing their money and still wanting more to go places and do things.

That’s too much to keep track of.

I completely agree, there have been years when all this would have been too much to keep track of. But right now with me as a stay at home mom, homeschooling only two kids, and the kids are older at age 7, 9, and 12, it is working and has been for six months.

20 Chores a week

When I made a list of all the chores that it would take to clean our house, I found about 80 weekly chores.

  • Empty the dishwasher every day
  • Rotate a load of laundry twice a day
    We do twenty loads of laundry a week for our family of five.
  • Vacuum once a week, etc.

When you tell a child to do the laundry, they don’t know what to do. But if you tell the child, “Put a load of dark laundry into the clothes washer.” They can learn that process and repeat it.

Also, children have notoriously short attention spans, so each of the chores on our chore list take 5-10 minutes.

  • Vacuum the living room
  • Wash the door
  • Clean the bathroom sink
  • Empty the dishwasher

So to get MOST of the chores done each week we need to each do 3 DAILY chores and 5 WEEKLY chores. Fly Lady has some great articles on her “Home Blessing Hour.” That is where I got most of the “weekly chore” ideas and many of the daily chores.

3 Daily Chores 5 days a week,
plus 5 Home Blessings once a week
is six days of work or 20 chores a week!

We use “I’ve been caught being good” coins to keep up with how many chores each child has done each week. Each child has their own assigned color, so that has eliminated stealing. They do a chore or two and report back to me that it is done and I give them the coin immediately. If I notice that a chore has not been done, they are called back to do it again or to complete it.

Each child has to earn their day’s coins before watching TV, playing video games, playing with friends, or going to after school activities. Yes, I have to be willing to miss a gymnastic class that I’ve paid for to get their work done. I’ve even threatened to let my child be tardy to school if she couldn’t get her one chore done before school. Our motto around here is:

School and chores, then play


How do you get them to do their chores?

I sometimes brag about my kids on facebook. Isn’t that what it’s for? I keep hearing this question, “How do you get them to do their chores?”

We have trained the kids to do chores since they could walk. 12 month old toddlers can walk over and put a dirty diaper in the trash can or clothes in the laundry. 24 month olds can start learning colors to sort laundry. Three year olds love to empty the dryer. Four year olds can play in the bubbles to hand wash dishes. I got this information from a fantastic article online called “Stages of Responsibilty.” (I cannot find the article I used online anymore, so I’ve reposted it here.)

Some people will say this is harsh, but it has taken years to teach my kids that I am serious. We’ve had better seasons and worse sesons, but over all we have to do our chores before we get to do anything fun. Proverbs speaks a lot about work and hard work being import for the future of our children when they are adults. My husband has a strong work ethic and he feels it is very important that we teach our children how to work.

When the children were preschoolers we each did ONE chore before each meal. We were home together and we did one chore before breakfast, one chore before lunch, and one chore before dinner.  That is 12 chores a day! That helped us keep up with simple dishes, laundry and picking up toys at least!

Now that my baby is 7 years old, all the children have been cross-trained to do all the chores alone or at least with help. The 7 year old still needs help with loading dishwasher but she can empty it alone. If someone needs “help” I am their helper unless someone else volunteers first.

I found we work best when we work independently but simulataneously. So we all do our chores at the end of the school day or before a meal. We each scurrying different directions. However, I don’t try to do my own chores if they need my help. I had to give up control of that and allow myself to be interrupted.

This is getting long, so I will go through the logistical details of our current chore system in the next post. But I hope this has inspired you to try something. Let your children help you. Teach them to work. It is worth it!