Inside: My kids weren't doing their chores … same for you? Get this free printable chore chart and my system for motivating the kids to do their chores and stop fighting about it.
No one wants to do chores, especially our kids. Chores are an honorable way to teach kids responsibility, to hold themselves accountable for their space, and make sure they understand that we are a team.
We all pitch in and do our part around the house so that come the weekend and evenings, we can relax and enjoy the home we've worked so hard to build together … I’m pretty sure they don’t always see it that way when mom is yelling about the chores not being done. #MomStruggle Am I right?!
If only there was a Free Chore Chart Printable or something to help us moms out!
Motivating your kids to do their chores
There has to be some way to motivate the kids to do their chores.
What if the kids could get paid when they DO their chores …
… and pay mom back if they slack off?
That sounds good to me! What about you?
Finding a great chore chart … is a chore
Chore charts that are visually appealing and big enough to see easily work best.
I want the chore chart to be fun because taking care of the place where you live should be part of enjoying life.
The chart also needs to be simple for the kids to use but easy to update and rearrange for us (the parents) as well.
Have you guys been able to find one of these magical chore charts?
I have a 10-year-old and an 18-year-old and finding a chart that can grow with the both kids and teens is nearly impossible.
All the ones I’ve found don’t have what I need and they definitely aren't very flexible. Their chores are way too simple or not applicable to our home.
A DIY Chore Chart that WORKS
That's why I created my own DIY Chore Chart and I’d like to share it with you!
My kids think I don’t know but they DO call me the “chore mom”. But they also got to using this DIY Chore Chart right away, especially my 10-year-old. This is only about 30 minutes of chores a day, depending on how efficiently they work. It looks like a lot but really, it's a fraction of what any of us do in our household on a daily basis. You stay at home parents know what I am talking about!
So why are my kids actually USING this chore chart when all the others failed in the past?
7 reasons why this chore chart is BETTER (and why other chore charts FAIL!)
Most chore charts fail because we don't enforce them 24/7. Consistency is KEY to making all of this work. I get it. You're tired. You don't want to argue all the time and ultimately, you just want to spend time with your children. We know there are so many benefits to having a chore chart but there's got to be an easier way to make it all work …
Here's why this DIY Chore Chart is the last one you'll ever need and why chore charts are important:
- Chores teach kids responsibility. Helping to keep your house clean will give the kids a feeling of pride of where they live. I think it’s hilarious when my 18-year-old brings her friends around. They think our house is FANCY but it’s just clean. A lot of the time, chore charts fail because we naturally want to rest and kids are no exception. A clean home is a luxury but it's free … we just have to clean it up!
- Chores teach kids life skills. As grownups, we eventually move out of our childhood homes and live on our own. We will have to wipe the counters and clean the bathroom but how? Some adults never learned how to do these basic tasks. How do I know? I was in the Army, and let me tell you, there were so many people over 18 whose parents never thought to teach them how to mop or iron. Some chore charts fail because as parents, we don’t spend the time in the beginning teaching our kids how to household chores.
- This chore chart is simple enough for kids to use. This DIY Chore Chart is uncomplicated to read and understand. It’s colorful and has icons for younger kids to understand what tasks are assigned to them. Words-only chore charts require for parents to read off tasks to younger kids … it's just another thing moms and dads are too busy to do.
- It’s easy to add new chores to this DIY Chore Chart. Many chore charts don't make it easy to add your own unique chores to the list. Using the FREE printables you can download below, you can pick and choose chores to fit your family's needs. Other charts don't allow you to expand or add any new chores to the list and usually, you're stuck with whatever ideas the creators had for chores.
- This printable chore chart makes it easier to move chores around. Many traditional chore charts and printables require you to start fresh if you need to adjust and move chores from one child to another. With this DIY Chore Chart, as your kids get older, you can assign them more challenging and time-consuming chores or assign easier chores for the younger ones. The flexibility is irreplaceable!
- Parents can quickly check to see if the child completed their chores. Other chore charts make it too hard for parents to see progress at-a-glance. Sometimes as a mom, I just don’t have the brain for more complicated things in my life. I would just like to walk by, take a peek at the chore chart, and be on my way. You can do that with this DIY Chore Chart!
- This helps Mom and Dad stay on budget. One of the biggest complaints my kids had about traditional chore charts is that we forgot to pay them. With this DIY Chore Chart, the money is right on the board next to the tasks; this motivates the kids to get stuff done! And because mom and dad know how much is getting paid out each week, they can easily add chore payments to the budget. If the money isn’t visible, parents can easily forget to pay the kids and the motivation to do chores is gone!
Ready to start now? CLICK HERE to subscribe to our newsletter and get this bonus chore chart printable in your first email to make the chore chart you'll ever need! Check your spam folder or promotions folder if you don't see the email in your inbox.
Sneaky ways to get your kids to do their chores
Get kids to take ownership of their chores. An easy way to get kids to take ownership of a task is to make them feel special. This can help them become motivated to do something we need from them, like chores. Try giving each child their own special dry erase markers and erasers so they feel ownership. These vivid color markers have erasers in the cap and come in pretty colors all the kids will LOVE!
I’ve found that giving them their own face magnets may seem trivial to most of us but to a small child, it’s the most hilarious thing they’ve seen all day. I'll share how to DIY them below! But if they’re not that into it, you can grab packs of flat back magnets with images of their favorite cartoon characters. I know my son would love these MARVEL Comics flair magnets and my teen daughter would love these hilarious cat butt magnets. Whatever it takes to make them feel ownership of their chores! Ha!
The biggest secret to motivating kids to do their chores: I’m telling you, put the money right on the chore chart! The kids won’t be able to resist the dollar bills every time they walk by … it's such a great reminder of what they have the possibility of earning. You can use a magnetic clip to hold the cash, like these large magnetic clips. I got similar clips for free as promotional items from brands and covered them with pretty washi tape to make them cute!
How much should your kids get paid for chores? How much kids should get paid is always a challenge but payment is one of the best ways to get your kids to do their chores. Let's keep it simple: the kids each get paid $1 per year of age. For example, my 10-year-old gets $10 a week and 18-year-old gets $18 a week. When the kids learn that they can earn more as they grow older, they get excited about the possibilities. The younger kids really love calculating how much they will make when they are this or that age in the future.
Paying your kids often will help keep them engaged in chores. Pay them every Friday, just like adults and treat them to a fun shopping trip with their moolah! Giving the kids something to look forward to is another sneaky way to get them moving on those chores.
A sneaky way to keep siblings focused on their own chores. Kids will be kids; you will definitely run into resistance or complaints when you try to start a new chore routine. Again, they’re kids! If they complain about another kid not doing their chores, you can now assign that chore to them. Remind them, we are a TEAM and we’re doing this together. My kids almost never complain that, “So and so didn't do HER chores!” because they know that means they'll now have to do it themselves.
What if you have more chores than time allows? Sure, there's TONS of stuff to be done around the house every week but we don't want to overwhelm the kids with too many chores at once. Add extra tasks to the chart as “bonus chores”. They can earn more money by completing these along with their regular chores.
Kids lose pay if they skip chores. If they skip a chore, that costs them $1. Parents can check the chart at bed time each day and deduct $1 for each chore not done. Mom and Dad now earn a dollar for having to follow-up … and the kid still has to do the chore the next day but does not get paid. Honestly, we just save the dollars until the next week. And we've only had to take money away one time because the kids catch onto this tactic REAL QUICK. They do not like losing money!
Okay, you're for sure ready now! CLICK HERE to subscribe to our newsletter and get this bonus chore chart printable in your first email. Check your spam folder or promotions folder if you don't see the email in your inbox.
Secrets to using the Best DIY Chore Chart EVER!
How to use this chore chart
For maximum success, these are the tips we found work best for DIY Chore Charts that work.
Put the white board in a central location in the house. We have it in the hall going to the kitchen because that's our highest traffic area!
How to assign the chores:
- Arrange the kids' name tabs and Day of the Week tabs (make below with printable) on the white board.
- Assign chores to each child by moving the tabs under their name on the board.
- Use the Day of the Week tabs to break things up evenly so the kids aren't overloaded on any one day.
- Older kids get more difficult chores. It’s easier if you keep the number of chores per kid the same but just change up the difficulty as they get older.
- Put extra chores under the “Bonus” tab.
Here’s how the kids get paid:
- $1 per year of age per week. My 10-year-old gets $10 a week and 18-year-old gets $18.
- Withdraw money from the bank and put it in a large magnetic clip right on the board. This way, they can see what they are working for!
- Pay them every week like an adult might get paid. Count out the money one by one to make it really feel like it’s a lot.
- They can earn $1 per bonus chore they do. Just keep a stash of ones in case they do bonus chores.
- If they don't do a chore, they get fined a dollar for each one and STILL have to do it the next day.
- If they complain about the other kids in relation to chores, move a chore from the other kid to the complainer kid's column. Now, they have to do that chore (it's one thing if they are coming to you for help but another if they are just whining. Moms know the difference!)
- All chores must be done before they can enjoy free time – playing, vid games, napping, etc.
- All chores must be done before they can do bonus chores.
- All chores must be done before they can pitch non-chores they can get paid for like washing the car for $20.
How to make the chore chart
Here are the supplies you'll need:
- HP Envy 7855 Inkjet Printer – get Instant Ink to have ink shipped to your door before you run out!
- HP Brochure Paper, Matte
- Smart phone
- Printable Chore Chart – CLICK HERE to subscribe to our newsletter and get this bonus chore chart printable in your first email
- XYRON sticker maker with magnet/lamination cartridge
- Quartet Magnetic Dry-Erase Board, 2′ x 3′, Euro Style Frame – Walmart.com
- Dry erase markers (optional) – to check off the chores as “done” if you are not using magnets
- Permanent marker (optional) – to write on the blank chore tabs
- HP Photo Paper, Glossy, 4×6
- Collage app for your phone
- Flat back glass marbles, about 1.25” in diameter – I got these at Jo-Ann Stores
- 1.25” diameter circle punch
- Aleene’s Clear Gel Tacky Glue – you have to use this to glue the photos to the glass marbles
- Heavy duty magnet discs
- Hot glue gun and hot glue sticks
With this FREE chore chart printable download, you get the blank chore chart you can fill out yourself PLUS you get my “chore mom” charts that I use with my kids! Save the work and just use the filled in ones I already made 😉
CLICK HERE to subscribe to our newsletter and get this bonus chore chart printable in your first email. Check your spam folder or promotions folder if you don't see the email in your inbox.
What's your trick for getting the kids to do their chores?
Let me know in the comments! And I'd love to hear the results if you decide to try our free chore chart printable. Your house is gonna be so clean-clean!