Pinheads Revisited – The Summer Chore Chart
Back at the beginning of the summer, I made this Summer Chore Chart for the kids, with the hope that it would keep them motivated to work around the house during their break. The finished product looked like this:
Overall, it had moderate success. Beyond the first week or so, it was most motivational for the kid who was most motivated. He earned enough money this summer to buy himself a ten-gallon aquarium and make it a comfortable home for five fish and a couple of snails. For the other kids, the success of the chart was more limited. They earned little more than enough to buy a few fish, but without the capital for the aquarium, the fish would have perished rather quickly.
As for the chores for which the kids could earn prizes rather than cash, those were performed even less frequently, and I ended up with a bag of prizes that will likely be used as party favors throughout the year.
One other problem we had was that the kids kept choosing the same, easiest chores over and over, so that I had to remove those easy chores (like dusting the living room tables) because they really didn’t need to be dusted every week.
For now, the chart remains on the wall near their play area. Like anything that you see every single day, they don’t really notice it that often any more, and I am back to having to ask for chores to be done.