To encourage your children to become productive members of the household and establish a consistent routine, print out a chart that will allow you to keep track of your child's weekly to do's. These charts are beneficial because they teach children to be responsible for their chores, and they offer the immediate reward of being recognized for a job well done as each chore is checked off.
Toddler Age Chore Charts
At this age, children are very eager to help around the house. Sticker charts are a great way to reward children after they have completed a task around the house. Start with simple tasks and after each one is completed reward them with a sticker. Toddlers need instant gratification and rewarding them right away will encourage them to keep working hard and complete all of their tasks.
Printable Charts to Download
The first three charts are blank. The days of the week are listed across the top, and you can enter the chores you want the child to do in the left hand column. Since toddlers cannot read, it is a good idea to provide a picture in the box. The last chart provides specific chores with a picture and description of the chore.
If you need help downloading the chart, check out these helpful tips.
Chores for Toddlers
Toddlers should be able to do the following chores with a little assistance:
- Pick up their toys
- Feed pets
- Throw away trash in garbage can
- Dust low surfaces
- Take laundry to their room
Preschoolers are still excited to help around the house, and they are old enough to take on a little more responsibility. Chores can now be completed with little supervision and rewards should be motivating and appropriate. Sticker charts can still be used, but they should come with an even bigger reward when all the chores are accomplished. Some great reward options are money, books or small toys. A fun idea is to have a "reward box" and in this box will be a variety of items that they can choose from after their sticker chart is completed for the week.
Preschool Chore Charts
The first three charts are blank, and the days of the week are listed across the top. The left column is blank so you can enter the chores you want the child to do. Since preschoolers are just starting to learn sight words, it is a good idea to provide a picture and a word underneath the picture. The last chore chart has specific chores listed with accompanying pictures and word descriptions.
Chores for Preschoolers
Preschoolers can help you do the following:
- Put away laundry
- Dust low surfaces
- Prepare food
- Set the table
- Put away groceries
At the elementary age, children can accomplish tasks given with minimal supervision. Children at this stage have a need to be independent, but may not be as willing to participate in helping out around the house, so rewards should be fulfilling. Sticker charts may work for lower elementary age children, but as for the upper elementary age, they may find stickers to be too babyish. The next best thing would be to use a point system where zero means the chore was not completed and one means the chore was completed. Reward bucks are another option at this age. Children can earn fake money after completing a task and cash them in for a reward.
Chore Charts for Elementary-Aged Kids
The following four charts are structured for elementary-aged children. The family chore list provides specific chores such as: setting the table, taking out trash, doing the laundry and loading the dishwasher. The baseball chore chart is broken up into three categories: my room, myself and other chores. This chart lists specific items in the first two categories and in the last category provides room for you to write down more chores. The third chart is a basic blank chart that lists the days of the week at the top and leaves space in the left hand column for you to enter chores. The last chart provides specific chores with pictures and words. For the more visual child, adding a picture may provide them with a better sense of the task.
Appropriate Chores for Elementary-Aged Kids
- Feed the pets
- Take out the garbage
- Do the laundry
- Set the table
Tips for Using Chore Charts
Chore charts can be an effective and helpful tool in managing your household. Encourage your kids by making chore time fun - play music, do chores alongside them, or even make a game of doing the chores. It is work, but it doesn't have to feel like it. Also, try these tried and true tips for making chore time easier:
- Use a picture chart for non-readers.
- To help your non-reading kids recognize common words, use a combination picture/word chart.
- Get your kids involved in making the chart by letting them color it.
- Find a theme that will appeal to your kids.
- Give them a goal to work towards. Let them earn rewards, such as television or computer time or a special treat. It doesn't have to be about money.
- Decorate the chart with photos of your children doing chores.
The chore charts you use must work for your unique needs. If your kids need to have the same chores every day for a week, don't feel you must use a daily chart. Make the chart work for your family; don't try to force your family to change to suit a chart.