Monday, August 25, 2008

Creativity the chaos way

I have been meaning to get up our task chart for a while and well, it is finally here. Jim and I designed and made this (ok, actually Jim and Adam made it, I just offered up part of the idea=)

As you can see there are tasks that are a MUST everyday and they NEVER change (morning routine, homework, reading, cleaning up and bedtime). Next there are tasks each child gets to pick for the week. The first task is an everyday task, then a 2x a week task and then a 1x a week task. The kids have many tasks to choose from and to help us remember how often they are suppose to be done, we wrote the number on the back. These are unique to our family and we are constantly coming up with new ones to add to the mix. Below are an example of some of the ones we have. Yes, some of these may be a little difficult for Katie to do alone, but she can do them all with help.

At the end of the day, right before bedtime, the kids do their task chart. THEY ALWAYS REMEMBER (wonder if it is because they can prolong bedtime for a few minutes or they just love to show off the work they have done=?) They each have their own color chip (pic1). They always take turns going first. They ONLY get a chip on that task if it was completed AND with a good attitude! The only one they fill out that they haven't done yet is bedtime, they put that up with the promise they will go to bed and stay in bed nice. Of course we have the liberty to remove it if they don't. (P.S. Once a chip is gone, it is gone and you are still expected to complete that task because it is your job!)

Every Sunday night after all the tasks have been done is payday. You gotta love our sophisticated bank (picture1)=) Each FULL row (all 7 days of reading have been done) then they get a color coded coin (pic2). They can trade in 2 coins for 1 dollar. If the WHOLE row is not full they do NOT get a coin for that row.

They can use their money to purchase things from the family catalog (again note the sophistication of the catalog binding - very sopisticated we are around here=). There are many options, they range from 2 dollars to 50 dollars. The choices range from the ice cream truck to a date with mom and dad. The actual "cost" to us ranges as well from free (sleeping in mom and dad's bed or visiting the toy section at Target) to a few bucks usually (ice cream or lunch at school). These can be as costly or as cheap as you want or need (Dave Ramsey class members). And again, these are as unique as your family.

Jim and I came up with these idea's out of necessity. We believe there are certain things you do because you are part of the family and then there are tasks you can do to earn money. However, with 4 kids we can't afford to dish out a couple bucks to all every week (ok, the twins are too little yet, but soon they will be in on the action). This is where the catalog was born. Honestly, I think we MAYBE spent $15 for everything (we didn't happen to have any scrap wood laying around this time) from the wood to the black spray paint (again, all out). Mostly, it was the time factor of cutting all the chips/squares and painting them, figuring out the tasks, the catalog, the money but we did it together and that was the best part. Additionally, the kids LOVE it. They know what is expected of them and they take great pride in there work and love that everyone can see they have done it. On the same token, if one gets taken away it is a constant reminder for the week to work on that area's of ourselves. 2 more things and then I am done ( I think this is my longest post yet) The star coin is for when we really feel a child has gone above and beyond in anything. They can not work extra for this, they don't know when they are getting it, they star coin is parental discretion ONLY! The coin itself is worth either $5 bucks, a chance to get 20 minutes of TV/computer if they are grounded from it or the right to earn back 1 lost chip. (note, if they buy back their lost bedtime chip but lose another one that week, we take BOTH off). They can save the star coins if they want to but they can't use them all on the same thing (saving 3 coins for an hour of tv). Lastly, this chart is only made for 2 children, we have not decided how we will remake it when there are 4 but since a few of my readers have more than 3 or 4 kids I am hoping maybe you have some idea's on how to expand? LMK,

1 comment:

APeurofan said...

Wow, you are very organized person. I see that you have taken the abundance approach with your parenting skills and hopefully your kids will reach positive deviance!