It’s tradition! I included our cards for this year and a link to download at the end:)
I made up a list of all the chores my kids help me do. Walk through your house and see what you would like done. Maybe you want dusting to happen at least once a week. Maybe your glass screen doors are covered in fingerprints like mine. Maybe everyone's shoe baskets are spilling into each others and you need to organize them and distribute them to the rooms. Or better yet, why couldn't your kids organize them?
Your kids can do more than you think~it may take some time to teach them how the job needs to be done, but in the long run it will pay off for years and years on both your parts. You all live in the house and you all need to help take care of it, right? Right. :)
Then, I typed up the list in Microsoft Word and added clip art pictures with them to make them a little more fun and also for the younger ones that can't read. I printed them off on different color of cardstock for each child, cut them into cards, and then took them to Mardel to get them laminated (I've found teacher and homeschool stores the least expensive for laminating) The kids cut them up, (if you're type A, you can straighten up the cutting when they're in bed :) Then I punched holes into them and put them onto a ring. Remember that frame I turned into a bulletin board? Turns out the hooks are a perfect place to hang chore cards on!
This is how we use them:
The "essential" ones like getting dressed, making bed, brushing teeth, etc. are done every day. I put a little star with a sharpie on those ones. Then, each day I add in one or two extra jobs that I decide need to be done that day. It makes a world of difference to divide the jobs up. Our big rule is that no one plays with friends, outside, on the computer, tv, or wii, nothing until their cards are finished. It's amazing how fast they work when their friends are waiting for them outside and their "cards" aren't finished yet.
Now, lest you think my kids wake every morning and come in and ask, "how can I help you today, mom?" I need to tell you that there will most likely be opposition. There will be some days of wailing, whining, protesting, gnashing of teeth, crying, howling, BUT
If you look...you'll also see some fun cards. I don't throw these in every day, but they just love these. It's a fun way to make them look forward to something and the chores seem to be done extra quick on those days.
I like to change things up every few months to keep the momentum going (especially with chores) so in the fall, we switch to chore charts. Also, I would recommend making some blank cards to write on with a dry erase marker for new ones you think of and want to add...
I hope these help you out!~
You can download our 2011 chore cards here (in Microsoft Word). Here is a list of the chores we use:
Pick up Room
Jobs We Rotate
Wipe Light Switches
Put Laundry Away
Clean Glass Door
Weed your garden area
Help with Landon
Wipe down bathroom sink & mirrors
Pick Up Playroom
Organize Board Games
Pick Up Toys Outside
Go to Park
Read a book with Mom
Go to the Zoo
Go on a Walk
Go to library
Play a Game