DIY/ for the kids

Kids Choice Chore System!

This Kids Choice Chore System works by allowing kids to pick the chores they want to complete.  You can even use this system for extra chores, that are above and beyond the every day chores.

My house is a lot of work.  You all know what that’s like I’m sure.  Between the kids, the cat and the hubby, my house rapidly turns into a pit.  I clean something, and 5 minutes later it’s a mess again.  I go from room to room to room to room and back to the first room to discover it’s in disarray.  Again.  It’s hard to keep up.  And I’m always the only one who seems to see the mess.  Yet it’s always there, and very rarely is it my mess. It’s time for a change.

My older 2 kids are old enough to contribute the the running of our household!  And certainly more than capable.  I believe in age-appropriate chores.  And I’m not just talking about things like clean your room and brush your teeth.  Because they are now almost 10 and 8, I’m a believer that tasks like those are must-do’s and not ones that need rewarding.  In real life, there are chores that just have to get done.  Brush your teeth.  Wash your hands.  Clean your room.  Feed the cat.  All required tasks. 

But there are so many other tasks that need done around the house, and it’s time the kids pitch in.

DIY Kids Choice Chore System

I scoured for different system ideas that the kids and the hubby & I could maintain.  I’ve tried the old chart and sticker system, but it always fell to the wayside.  This time I was determined to find something that would work for us.  So I put together a kids choice financial reward system.

The intent for this system, is for the kids to be able to earn some money, by choosing how they do it.  My hubby & I don’t buy a lot of extra toys and stuff for the kids outside of holidays and birthdays, but they are always wanting lego, and pet shops and barbies every time we go out.  So now the kids have the opportunity to make and save their own money.

So I got busy creating a chore chart system using Martha Stewart’s line of stationary products (at Staples). With Martha on my side, I knew I could find exactly what I needed to put together my kids chore system.  On a side note…this project cost less than $10.

DIY Kids Choice Chore System

How to create a chore chart system:

  • I bought 2 packages of the Martha Stewart Home Office Large Metal Rim Tags.
  • I bought a magnet roll with a sticker backing, so that I could just attach the size of magnet that I wanted to the back of the tag.
  • I wrote each chore on a tag, and assigned a dollar amount.

How this chore system works:

  • You give them chore options.  They pick the chores they want to complete.  You could use this system for the EXTRA chores, not the day to day stuff they should do anyway.
  • Make the system visible and accessible!  Ours is on the front of the fridge at their eye level.
  • The kids can pick and choose the chores they want to do. (And they can’t each do the same chore, so they have to negotiate with each other if there is conflict.  Or it’s first come, first serve.)
  • Once they have completed their chore (after approval from Mom or Dad), they hang their completed chore tag on their assigned hook.
  • Friday is payday.  On this day we add up what they have accomplished during the past week, and give them their money!

Chore Chart Tips!

  • There are some chores that don’t need done everyday or even weekly, so I just put those tags off to the side, and put them back on the fridge when I need them done.

DIY Kids Choice Chore System

Chore Ideas for Kids:

  • Brush the cat.
  • Clean baseboards on the main floor.
  • Vacuum the basement.
  • Sweep after dinner.
  • Change your bed sheets.
  • Dust stair railings.
  • Vacuum the stairs.
  • Clean your bathroom tap, sink and mirror.
  • Empty dishwasher.
  • Parent’s choice, for those other tasks that come up from time to time.
  • The possibilities are endless!!
DIY Kids Choice Chore System

I just put all the tags onto a pretty piece of scrapbook paper on the fridge. The paper keeps all the tags contained.  And it’s looks nice too!

Honestly, the kids are so excited about this system!  I can’t even tell you how much!  My hubby & I exchanged several surprised looks over the weekend.  We couldn’t believe how much was getting done around here.  Our house feels and looks cleaner.  And the best part….my daughter said “Mom, look how much I got done!  I feel so good about myself!”  AWESOME!

So I’m happy.  The kids are happy and feel good.  The house is clean. Win-win-win!

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  • Reply
    Kelsey Poofy Cheeks
    February 21, 2012 at 6:24 PM

    I just found the Martha Stewart items at Staples and was attracted to those tags right away!! Such a great idea! My boys are 4 and 2, but I would love to start some sort of system with them to get them in a daily routine of brushing their teeth, cleaning up toys, etc. 🙂

  • Reply
    North of Wiarton & South of the Checkerboard
    February 21, 2012 at 6:50 PM

    When my boys were young, I used to have a chart of chores/rewards on the fridge. Not to fret, nobody notices the trail of mess they leave behind but us ! Unpleasant, frustrating, but normal *sigh*

  • Reply
    February 21, 2012 at 7:25 PM

    Seems we come up with a new system and the kids are psyched and then they drop away and my enforcement falls by the wayside until the next great idea we come up with. Maybe that’s the ticket- new charts/chores/rewards every so often to keep their interest.

  • Reply
    February 21, 2012 at 11:06 PM

    I’ve been looking for some sort of chore system for my kids, since my house always ends up looking like a big mess too. I might have to try your idea and see how it works. Do you have it set up so that the kids get paid for everything or are there some things that they have to do as part of their own personal responsibilities, like making their bed, brushing their teeth, and keeping their room clean? I feel like they should do some things without getting paid…that’s how my life is 🙂

    • Reply
      August 29, 2013 at 4:34 AM

      I do both. I have a regular chore chart with 7 items per day. If they do it without being reminded I will mark an x. If it gets done late or with me bugging them, it’s just a /. In total that’s 98 points (7 chores x 7 days x 2 points for being on time). At the end of the week we tally the points and they can trade them in for a family treat (swimming, ice-cream evening, dinner of their choice, popcorn and a movie) by the amount of points they accrue …usually it takes a few weeks to earn one. Or, they can trade 100 points in for $5.00. Then, extra chores can add to that. When they have a purchase goal in mind, they can work diligently. I weigh this against what it would cost me to buy them all the things they want and the outings they want. It balances out.

      • Reply
        August 30, 2013 at 11:05 PM

        Very good ideas! I especially love rewarding them for doing a chore without reminding them…I just may have to incorporate this into our system! Thanks for the tip!

      • Reply
        tiffany jordan
        November 5, 2013 at 10:34 AM

        Cool ideas

  • Reply
    Tiffany Pressley
    February 22, 2012 at 8:25 PM

    This is awesome! I have seen a few charts like this on Pinterest but I really like yours. My boys are 4almost 5 and 18 months. The youngest one actually cleans better than the 4 year old! Lol but I started him out earlier than I did the older one. I may try something like this soon. Thanks for the idea!
    My name is Tiffany and I am a new follower. Would love for you to follow me back!

  • Reply
    February 23, 2012 at 7:23 AM

    This is a fantastic idea. Love it!

  • Reply
    [email protected] eco friendly homemaking
    February 25, 2012 at 12:58 AM

    This is such a great idea! I found you through the blog hop. Glad I did.

  • Reply
    Stephanie @ henry happened
    February 25, 2012 at 2:23 AM

    What a fantastic idea – I can’t wait to hear how it goes! I also can’t wait till my kiddos are 8 & 10 so they can get in on the chores!! 🙂

  • Reply
    Mama Jodi
    February 25, 2012 at 7:31 AM

    I’m in the same mommy boat…the house that instantly destroys itself the moment it is clean. Kids that walk and drop things randomly in their path. I definitely need to find more things for them to help with around the house, and this is a great system.

  • Reply
    February 26, 2012 at 2:34 AM

    LOVE THIS! And I am a big fan of Martha at Staples. Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    February 26, 2012 at 7:16 PM

    Hi Jo-Anna, I’m a new L.Follower. Love your blog and LOVE this great chore system. I’ll forward it to my daughter for her boys.

  • Reply
    Ali Richardson
    February 27, 2012 at 12:05 AM

    This looks like a GREAT system!

  • Reply
    Mary Sullivan Frasier
    February 27, 2012 at 9:52 AM

    What an adorable and creative way to get the kids to pitch in and be proud to do it! I don’t have any little ones at home anymore, but I’m thinking maybe I could use this for Hubbs. The warmer weather is coming and he’s got to support his golf addiction somehow! ;~)

    Stopping by from COM Monday and newly following. Thanks for sharing such a great project! (I’ve pinned it)

  • Reply
    February 27, 2012 at 12:34 PM

    I’ve tried several chore systems but in the end I end up shouting at the kids to pick things up and pack things away.

    Thanks for the new idea, going to give it a try and see if works for the kids cause heaven knows I could do with a tidy(er) house!

  • Reply
    crafty gyrl
    February 27, 2012 at 6:49 PM

    I love this idea! We are trying this asap!!

  • Reply
    weight loss
    February 28, 2012 at 4:24 AM

    hmmm…Nice post, thanks for sharing…, just waiting for new post
    Thanks ya, Erni

  • Reply
    Alison @ Oopsey Daisy
    March 2, 2012 at 1:11 AM

    I am so with you… why am I the only one who sees the mess?! And why does my home get MORE messy when my husband is home?! This is such a fun idea! Thanks for sharing at oopsey daisy!

  • Reply
    March 2, 2012 at 11:41 PM

    This is fantastic! Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    Jeanette Murray
    March 3, 2012 at 5:23 PM

    Great idea for older kids! I’ll have to keep this in mind for when my 2 (almost 3) year old is to that stage.

  • Reply
    March 5, 2012 at 2:30 AM

    Oh I love, love, love this idea. I am going to use it with my 16 year old and my 5 year old. This is genius! I have been looking for something that will get them motivated that I do have to micro-manage. This is so straight forward and makes them responsible for themselves. Thank you for sharing!

  • Reply
    March 5, 2012 at 5:24 PM

    This is a great idea! And it looks great on your fridge while it is being “available”, unlike some chore systems that just look industrial and ugly. Your’s is pretty! Thanks.

  • Reply
    March 12, 2012 at 3:08 AM

    Oh my goodness this is simply genius! <3 I love that they can select, that it's easy, that there is value assigned and that you all live in a happier cleaner home by working together. Fab job my friend!

    Thank you so much for linking up and sharing!


  • Reply
    Lyuba @ Will Cook For Smiles
    March 12, 2012 at 3:48 PM

    OMG! I love this! I have to pin it and remember a few years later when my kids are old enough for chores! great idea!

  • Reply
    March 13, 2012 at 3:45 PM

    You are a genius! That is all.

  • Reply
    Jill @
    March 16, 2012 at 12:12 AM

    Love this! We just posted our Kitchen Fun and Crafty friday link party and would LOVE for you to share this! We have also included a Sugarlicious giveaway!

  • Reply
    March 22, 2012 at 1:55 PM

    I like this…though I’ve found another currency to use if you’re broke or don’t want to use money. Computer time (or TV time). 🙂

  • Reply
    June 29, 2012 at 5:10 AM

    I have a similar system but without the strings. Once the chore is done, it’s hung on a magnetic cup-hook with the little hole. I also taped over them first so I can use a china marker and erase then re-write new chores. Using different colors for different kids helps keep the harder chores from being attempted by younger kids. It’s a great system!

  • Reply
    July 3, 2012 at 11:19 PM

    This is great! Let’s face it, kids want money. The will think they are racking up the dollars doing these chores and collecting thier tokens for payment. This can also be a lesson is counting money as well. I am going to give this a try and perhaps I will see my floor again! I must say I love the “Parent’s Choice” tag. Rather than trying to come up with that one thing you know you will forget about, it’s an easy out!

  • Reply
    July 27, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    I’ve been doing a similar system with my kids for a long time, and they LOVE IT! I really like your method though, and i think i’m going to change it up when we move to this tags/hooks system so they don’t have to write down the chores, they can just hang up each tag they do. Heres a few things we do that you might like as well! We don’t just pay out for the chores they do, they have “bills” to pay. they have to do at least $5 worth of chores in a week to pay the rent, light bill, internet, and heat. (balances out to about 1 chore a day) and anything they make after that, is all theirs to do whatever they want with!

    In my house we also have a system of credit! Once they save up to a goal of their choice (a video game, special toy, has to be at least $20) they can have a $5 credit that has a 10% weekly interest rate until it’s paid back (yes, a 12 and 9 year old are totally capable of understanding this!). They can also open a savings account, but they have to save at least $10 before it can be opened, and it can’t dip below $10 or they will have to pay a penalty.

    We also have penalties for late payments, leaving lights or computers on, doors open, and bad grades. And they are required to keep track of how much they make and turn it in on Fridays!

    This is a ton of work to keep up with, but it’s so worth it… kids are graduating hs and going on to college not understanding that credit has penalties, that you have to pay your bills before you have money to play with, and that you have to have money before you can open savings accounts… This is fun for them, and they LOVE IT. they have no idea they are learning so much 🙂

    • Reply
      A Pretty Life in the Suburbs
      August 7, 2012 at 9:52 PM

      Oh my gosh this sounds so fantastic! Kids really do need to understand the value of money! I’m keeping this in mind! Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    May 25, 2014 at 3:25 PM

    I just found your site, and was wondering how your system is going. Is it still going strong? If not, how long did it last? Any other tips or advice you learned from this? Thanks!

    • Reply
      [email protected]
      May 25, 2014 at 7:17 PM

      Hi Jen! I do still use my system occasionally. I find now cleaning & chores have become more of a routine with my kids, so the more they were used to doing their chores, the less I had to use it! I still love the system though, and will use it in full force once my youngest is old enough to pitch in too! 🙂

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