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August 28, 2010

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Good point, CP - the list for us includes what they need to do to be contributing members.

And that's what I'd reco, Fibi - start her on her birthday (or heck, now!) and make a list of regular "duties." I'd make the stuff you're doing together - like the dusting, etc. extra. My husband will pay the kids to do the big stuff - which is completely his thing and fine by me. He'll hand out the money and I don't have to worry about it.

But as for the regular stuff, it's daily duties - like making bed, emptying dishwasher, etc.

It's surprising to many parents how much kids love helping with stuff around the house. Especially if they don't hear us complaining about it. Kids are eager to contribute.

We use a list to help get our older child out of the door each morning without feeling like we need to micromanage the process. I describe the process here in End the Morning Struggle Overnight: http://www.childperspective.com/mindful-parenting/end-the-morning-struggle-overnight/

Paying an allowance for chores can backfire. Our kids get an allowance every week just for being contributing members of the family, but I am not comfortable paying them for jobs that are expected and I otherwise don't get paid for.

At what age did you start the allowance? My daughter will be four in a couple of months. Right now she loves to help vac, dust and do laundry. But at some point she is going to stop wanting to do those things and they will become "chores." It is also a huge challenge for me to be patient and let her do things, when I know I can get it accomplished ten times faster.

We do a weekly allowance, Maria, so long as the charts are completed at the end of the day.

I used to try to track them with a sticker chart or something (like end of the day then they get a sticker on another chart), but it just got to be too much. So, for now, I just pay them on Fridays (I used to use an online tracker but they like to be able to see how much they have) and then when we go shopping and they want something, they know how much money they have.

Quinlan was super excited to turn 6 since she knew she'd get a raise.

I like this idea. The allowance is weekly, monthly?

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