How to Implement a Chore Chart Reward System for Kids

Chore Flip Chart

Does your child lack motivation to finish his or her chores? Are you unsure where to start when it comes to keeping track of completed chores?

Children may be inspired to work hard and correct resistant behavior if they are working toward a goal, which is where a chore reward system may come in handy. Once you have implemented a process for keeping track of household chores, you can reflect on the idea of a reward system for your child. Let's start by considering his or her age.

Age-Appropriate Reward Structures

For young children, financial responsibility and "saving up" are most likely new concepts. To help your child develop good financial habits early, consider a reward system that offers a more immediate reward. Some age-appropriate rewards for children in elementary school include:

  • Reading an extra bedtime story
  • Having a picnic at the park
  • Having a pizza night
  • Going roller skating or ice skating
  • Having a playdate
  • Getting a chance to earn small sums of money

Preteens and teenagers should have greater understanding of how to budget money. They should also know that they will have to work harder and wait longer for certain rewards. To reinforce this concept, have your child collect a star or memento on each day of the week and then turn them all in at the end of the week for a reward. Age-appropriate rewards for middle and high school students include:

  • Staying up late
  • Selecting a special dinner
  • Going bowling with friends
  • Having a sleepover
  • Taking a day off from chores
  • Getting a chance to earn money

Providing an Allowance

There are several options for establishing chore reward systems, and providing an allowance is one of them. If you do choose a reward system involving money, here are some considerations to start with.

  • As your child gets older, and as his or her tasks become more difficult, consider increasing the rate of pay.
  • Consider when you will reward your child. For younger students, it may be every time they complete a chore. For older children, consider the "saving up" strategy discussed in the previous section.
  • Consider how you will reward your child. Will each chore have a different pay rate, or will you pay your child a predetermined amount daily, or weekly, if all chores are completed?
  • Would it be beneficial for your family to allow your child to take on extra chores of his or her choosing for extra allowance money?
  • Does your child have any chore suggestions? He or she may enjoy a particular chore, so this shouldn’t be ignored.

Once you've determined this process, the last step is to decide how you will teach your child about financial responsibility. This could be done through a savings account or by setting a budget.

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