Monday, August 27, 2018

Turing Chores into a Fun Time for Kids

Getting to get kids to do chores is something most parents dread. Here's a post from a reader about how she turns chores into something fun for the whole family. I'll have to implement some of them with my kids.

Parents all have their own methods for getting their kids to do their work. Some of them yell at the kids until they scamper around like mice to do their chores for fear of their parents. That’s not a method I recommend. In fact, I would recommend the opposite- getting your kids to enjoy the work they do. You may get them to do the work by threatening and punishing, but you will not get their heart. If you make the chores fun for them, maybe even give them an allowance, then you get them excited about what they are supposed to be doing. It may take a bit of extra work and require you to have a good attitude, but it is definitely worth it.

Reward Your Kids

I think this is a method that everyone knows, but it is underutilized. If you give your kids some sort of reward for doing their chores, then you can get them to move quicker and have some motivation. Now, you want to be careful about over-using this method, or you can teach them that they should only do their responsibilities when they are rewarded for them.

At any rate, this is a great method, and you can use snacks, toys or other gifts to motivate your kids. Use those leftover party favours or birthday party snacks that you have stored away. You don’t have to use physical rewards that cost money, though. You can also reward your kids with game time or screen time or tell them you will take them to a park or something. You can also reward them with staying up late or letting them pick what they want for a meal. These kinds of rewards don’t cost anything, and it lets you reward their good behaviour in a way that makes work fun for them.

Play Some Music

Sometimes, all you need is a little music to get your kids moving in the right direction. If they are feeling lethargic and lazy, then you can try to boost their spirits by playing some upbeat music. You can play their favourite songs and even let them pick the next song if they are working well. If you have multiple kids doing work, then you can say that the one who is working the best or the fastest will get to pick the next song.

Playing music while they work lets them not think so much about what they have to do. They may be focusing on the music and not really pay attention to how much work they have to do. Your kids may even dance or sing along with the music and get in a much better spirit about the work they have to do than if you just let them work without the music playing. You do have to be careful about using this method, though, since if you have kids of different ages, you can end up playing music that one of them hates. You’ll have to judge for yourself if this is a method that can really work based on where you can play music from and what your kids like to hear.

Make It a Contest

Kids love to compete, no matter what age they are or whether they are boys or girls. You can tap into that with the household chores by making it a contest between them to see who will win. You don’t have to issue a reward to motivate them or say that there will be a prize to the winner. You can simply ask which of them will work the fastest and be the first one done. This can be motivated by a reward, if you like, though. You may say that the first one done gets to play games first or pick what you eat for lunch. More often than not, though, just the simple idea of being better at something that their sibling will be enough to get your kids to the do the work quickly. It will be like a game to them, since they are competing, and you’ll have to be careful to make sure that they do the work well and don’t just rush through it all.

That’s important with any of these motivational tools you use. Your kids may go through the work too quickly and not take the proper time to do things the way they should be done. You’ll have to look over their work when they are done to ensure that they did a good job, and it can help to remind them at the beginning that they are not done with their work until they do it properly.

Some Other Ideas
Here are a few more ideas that can make work more interesting and fun for your kids that you can combine with some of these other methods I have listed already:

  • Open up some windows and doors- If you get more light into the house, it makes it look less drab and depressing. Open up some of the windows and even doors to get breeze and light in here and make your kids feel better. Fresh air does wonders for the brain and the motivation our kids have to do their work.
  • Work with them- If you assist your kids as they work, you can be their cheerleader. You can take part in the contest to compete with them and get them motivated. You can assist them as they work to ensure they do things properly and that they are keeping up the pace. Having a working buddy can help them feel like they are not doing everything on their own and can make tedious or large choirs far less frustrating.

Hopefully, you can use some these ideas the next time you have your kids cleaning at home. If not you then Max at Diamond Cleaning - Duct says “you can always hire a professional service to do it”. At some point in their life, they will grow out of you needing to coach and motivate them and be able to do those things for themselves.

See my disclaimer.