Instead of going back to the kids' chore chart we used quite awhile ago, with tasks on it that all still required my assistance, last week I decided to revise it. I picked five things I think Eli can and should do all by himself throughout the day and [key] without me asking. The 5 tasks I put on his list:
1. Sippy cup - put it in the fridge when he's done with it
2. Shoes - take them off and put them on our shoe shelf as soon as we come inside from something
3. Bed - at least attempt to make bed (we're still practicing how to do this)
4. Dishes - take plate/bowl to kitchen sink after meals
5. Laundry - put clothes down the laundry shoot after we get dressed for the day
At the end of the day I evaluate how he did throughout the day with each task. If several times I had to remind him to do it but he did do it, then he gets just a regular sticker. If he did it most times on his own, then he gets a gold star. And if he didn't do it at all, then he obviously gets no sticker for that task. At the end of the week we count up his gold stars, and he gets a small treat based on how many stars he got. I originally was shooting for 10, (as it is in the picture above), but I think I'm going to change that to just getting a treat equivalent to what he earned. Today he got one M&M for the 10 stars he earned last week. (and we only started on Wednesday) Closer to 15 stars would be something a little bit bigger like maybe a tootsie roll. ALL stars would be fantastic like an ice cream for goodness sakes! That would be amazing! But anyway, you get the idea.
When I re-printed the chart for this week I renamed it "Eli's Responsibility Chart" instead of "chore chart". And while I was at it, I printed one for Hannah too because at the end-of-the day evaluations last week, she'd want to be a part of the stickers and chart too. So for her chart, I took off the "make bed" task but otherwise left it the same as Eli's. She's younger so if she regularly does the tasks at all when I ask her to, she'll earn her stickers at the end of the day. I'm not quite sure what I want my expectations to be for her just yet, so we'll figure it out as we go along.
But so far, it seems to working very well for Eli! He's been awesome at putting his cup in the fridge when he's done, putting his shoes away when we come home, and taking his plate to the kitchen after meals! And it's soooo nice not to have to search for his cup when it's time to get him something to drink, shoes don't become a clutter bug, and he's becoming a regular part of dinner clean-up. He's very good about doing things when we ask him to, so the key to all of this is that he learns to do it on his own and take responsibility for his own clean-up. I think this will be excellent help in preparation for new baby to come, and I'm excited to see how it continues to go, with both children!
What about you? Do you have anything like this with your own children? Any tips or ideas to share?