January 18, 2012
In an effort to help my children learn the concept of working together as a family to get things done so that we can spend more ‘fun’ time together I took a page from the Maxwell’s Managers of Their Chores. The idea is easy enough; each child has a list of things they are responsible for each day. Those things are placed in name badge holders that you can pick up at any office supply store. When the child wakes up each morning they look at the first thing in their packet; once that is done they move the card to the back of the pack and move on to the second responsibility. When they reach the last thing in their packet, their done.
Since we want our children to manage all areas of their life in an orderly fashion I have modified the Maxwell system to fit our needs. It mirrors the Accountable Kids model with the exception that our daily activities are in a 3-ring binder. Each child’s binder is broken up into three sections: morning, afternoon, and evening. The morning pages are waking up, devotions, getting dressed, eating breakfast, brushing teeth, making beds, cleaning room, morning chores. The afternoon pages are eat lunch and lessons (the girls are taking naps during lesson time). And the evening pages are set/clear table, put away clothes, devotions, bed time.
Since starting the binders our days have been running smoothly. There are no arguments, no complaining, and no dilly-dallying. The children know that as soon as they are done with each section its playtime, reading time, etc. The system has eliminated almost all the stress and frustration from our daily routine. Small victory.
Today, after completing his morning section, my son came to me and reported in. I inspected his work and sent him off to play with praises for doing a great job. It was a repeat of yesterday. I could see the satisfaction of a job well done in his eyes. The comment that followed is what justified the whole binder system for me. Before he went off to play my son turned to me and said “It doesn’t take long when you just do it.” I smiled and said “I’m proud of you.” He has spent the last 90 minutes playing with his sisters. BIG Victory.