I had planned on writing a post about the Olympics this morning. A little ditty about my blasé attitude towards the Olympics before it started (for reasons I won’t share – my husband thinks my reasoning proves some sort of mental deficit) but how the opening ceremonies and the games themselves truly intensified my pride in Canada.
Instead I’ve spent a large portion of the day working on my son’s Chore Chart. There have been some intense negotiations, a little bit of research and a lot of help from some lovely Twitter folk.
Jackson will be six in April. He is a fairly good helper but tends to forget to pick up his clothes and put away his toys. Couple this with the fact that both my kids are little hoarders-in-training and tidy-up is a pretty frustrating business with my inner monologue bursting with expletives.
And I really want to work on allowance to teach the value of money. My plan is to put half into a ‘savings’ jar and half into a ‘spend me’ jar.
I have added an extra dollar earning potential (bringing us to five dollars) to be paid for extra things that are especially nice, helpful or unexpected. We call it his Special Acts of Awesomeness dollar. For example, if he’s helpful and kind with his sister. Or maybe he picks up litter or holds the door open for someone. We didn’t talk or negotiate this because I don’t want him doing nice things just to be rewarded, however, if we note things during the week we will thank him and bonus him when paying his allowance.
We talked about what he thought his chores should be and his list very closely matched mine: clothes in dirty hamper, pick up your toys and make your bed. Then we discussed things he’s not doing regularly now but could be and added them (ie. setting the table and feeding our dog).
Listening was a task that Jackson really wanted on his chart. He was fairly certain that compensation would be a considerable help with this heavy burden. I took that moment to insert the lesson that some things are just part of life and will be done. Always. And then I gave him The Mom Look.
Here is what we’ve come up with. I’m sure it will need some tweaking over the next couple of weeks as we get used to this but it’s a start.
Now the trick will be coming up with Lily’s. She’s already asked and, contrary to almost every parenting article I read this morning, I’m pretty okay with putting my three-year old straight to work.