The hard lesson of chores

So, chores sounds negative as a term doesn’t it…should probably rebadge them as positive behaviour support exercises….mmm, still doesn’t sound any good. Guess what makes it good as a child…pocket money that you get by doing the chores….then they sound awesome!

 It’s quite important I think to show your kids that there is a real value to you putting in a good days work and working hard so we can all enjoy nice things in life or saving up for our next family holiday.

Sounds easy for a working mum who organises and tries to motivate herself and team every day and who works in marketing and makes things pretty….but no, kids are a different project than I have ever been handed before.

 I am trying at the moment to teach my kids the value of sharing the load of chores in the household and earning some pocket money.

My best friend told me about the $1 a year of their age idea. This I have tried for a few months and worked ok. Basically, if they are 10, they can earn up to $10 etc… I do find the chance of this is much higher when its new and novel and also when it is school holidays. The kids have more time on their hands to achieve the number of tasks and driven by wanting $$ to spend in the break. When they went back to school, the drive went away and I had to go back to doing the dishwasher myself…..this chores thing is an ongoing challenge!

Maybe this is like marketing and I need a teaser campaign or a relaunch?


I’m now trying target practice. No, not really but I thought an apt description of what I am trying now…..find a target or something for the kids to save for and help them to see the value of doing something to earn pocket money to gain a reward you have saved up for.

 In theory, it sounds good…..still a work in progress…….my little boy is getting this (very slowly). He took a fancy to a ‘green machine’ the other day as we saw one in the playground and he had a go on it, while we waited for his sister to finish her class. Did anyone else have one of these? I grew up with one and my older brother and I loved it! I saw it and it brought back so many memories, so yes I agreed we need to have one and this would be a good target for him to save towards.

 So I found one on gumtree and did the negotiation and bought one for him, and he agreed to pay for this with his pocket money. We made a deal that it would be mine until he saved up the rest of his pocket money to buy it off me. He had $41 in his jar and only needs $9 so I thought, simple. I have now had this green machine sitting in my garage for about 10 days and he sneaks in to sit in it when I’m not looking, but is so very reluctant to do any chores to buy me out. I’ve had the ‘it’s not fair I just want to ride it’ pretty much every day since it arrived!

 I’m determined he will get this lesson completed…..and I may go grey in the meantime! He joined me for some gardening on Sunday, attracted by the thought of $1 or $2 towards the $50. Once he got the $2 (for, I would say, not doing much to help in the garden)….and still not completely getting the concept, stormed off after screaming ‘I don’t care I want to ride it now, so not fair’…….well he got $3 this week for chores and handed the money to me and seemed happy we are now up to $44 and almost at $50 so we are chipping away at it…..gosh this is hard work…….let’s all hope we get to the magic $50 soon so we can all enjoy the green machine!

 I have started my relaunch campaign this week with a new rewards chart in the kitchen with a pretty Snoopy on it to attract attention to my target market, my kids, with the hope they will actually do something Monday to Sunday to gain a tick towards pocket money at the end of the week. I really don’t get it…..if all I had to do was empty the dishwasher and I got paid $1, I would be there!

I found one below you might also want to have a look at Rewards Chore Chart
Rewards Chore Chart

Well as this is a game of persistence, I will not surrender! Any tips or encouragement would be much appreciated. I am using my own motto of ‘never give up’ on this one so stay tuned for any breakthroughs!

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