Best Christian Parenting Books For New Parents in 2023
Parenting: 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family
We're Pregnant! The First Time Dad's Pregnancy Handbook
Shepherding a Child's Heart
The Whole-Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child's Developing Mind
Triggers: Exchanging Parents' Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses
Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters: 10 Secrets Every Father Should Know
For Parents Only: Getting Inside the Head of Your Kid
We're Parents! The New Dad Book for Baby's First Year: Everything You Need to Know to Survive and Thrive Together
The New Strong-Willed Child
Expectant Parents: Preparing Together for the Journey of Parenthood
Creative and Fun Family Chore Days
Motivating children to do their chores can sometimes be a daunting task. Parents try everything; they read parenting books and magazines and ask friends for advice. We eventually find a few things that work - for a while.
Paying an allowance works for a good period of time. Using allowances as educational tools motivates parents to try to make allowances work even when they don't. Many children are motivated to do their chores for spending money. Others, however, are not. They weigh their desire for money later against their desire to play at the moment.
There is also the issue of family budgeting. Some families simply cannot afford to pay an allowance. Other families find they cannot pay what their children demand. Those families need other options.
Many parents try the chore chart avenue. This works for some children, but not others. Some children feel a sense of pride in their accomplishments and having a visual aid to show their progress works for them. Other children may feel a sense of pride in their accomplishments, but a piece of paper does nothing for them. And still other children could care less.
Parents find themselves wishing they could put a sense of play into chores so that their children would simply do them. This is something I attempted to do. I tried various ways of injecting play into chores and found that for the everyday chores, this simply does not work. However, this approach works perfectly for a one day chore event.
Create a family chore day. You will want to set aside one to four days a month as Family Chore Days. On these days, the entire family works together to clean the entire house. There are different themes for Family Chore Days, and you can pre-assign the activity, or surprise your children that day.
The easiest theme is Board Game Chores. There are two ways to approach this theme. The first way is to play short board games where the winner is free from chores that session. In between each game, the family breaks and does chores together for thirty to sixty minutes. You might want to assign each person their own specific chore or divide the family into teams to attack different rooms. You could allow the loser to choose the next game.
The second way to approach Board Game Chores is to play one long running game, such as monopoly. Monopoly can be an all day game, so it works great. Choose one parent to be the break time indicator. Every other time that person passes "Go," it is break time. Set a timer for fifteen minutes and send everyone off on a mad sweep of chores. Keep repeating this process throughout the game.
When my children were younger, their favorite theme was Chore Balloons. Simply write different chores on separate slips of paper and insert them into balloons before you inflate them. Toss the balloons on the floor and let the children pick a balloon and pop it. They must complete that chore. Parents can pop a balloon, or have their own list of chores to do with each session. After those chores are done, the family meets together and pops another balloon. This process is repeated until all balloons are popped. You need to make sure that you have enough Chore Balloons to go around evenly.
You can mix up the Chore Balloons theme by adding in prizes. In some of the balloons, you would put prize slips instead of chores. Great ideas for prizes would be leftover items from your children's birthday party treat bags. We all have leftovers from the children who could not make our children's birthday parties. I keep these in a box in my closet for things like this. Another prize idea is simply writing on the slip of paper that they get to play during that chore session.
Now that my children are teens, they enjoy my Chore Racing theme. I make each child a list of chores. I cut those lists with scissors into smaller lists. Each of the smaller lists has three separate chores. I always break down larger chores into smaller tasks for this theme. I give each of them one of the small lists of chores and count down: "On your mark, get set, go!" They race each other to complete their chores first. The prize for the winner has to be something they want, or they will not cooperate. I like going to the Dollar Tree and Big Lots to find very inexpensive items that they will end up fighting over. The winner gets to pick their prize and then do whatever they want until the other(s) are finished. I give my children a thirty minute break after everyone is done before starting the next race.
Another take on Chore Racing is my Prize Table theme. I purchase similar prizes, or use leftover party treats. I make a large list of chores and everyone picks the one they want to do and crosses it off the list. Once they complete that chore, they pick a prize and choose their next chore. Sometimes children are motivated to complete their task quickly because they don't want to get stuck doing the dishes. Sometimes children are motivated to complete their task quickly because they are fighting over one of the prizes and they want to get done first.
Whatever you decide to do for your Family Chore Day, always include fun food. Serve ice cream sundaes, hamburgers and hotdogs, fresh baked cookies or any other fun food. This will be the cherry on top of your day.