Mayana is four in twelve days *sob*. She is getting to be such a big girl, and very capable. She’s a great helper, and makes my life easier in many ways. She is learning to help around the house, and is especially helpful in entertaining her baby brother when I need him distracted for a few minutes!
I really want to encourage Mayana in her attitude of helpfulness (she generally LOVES to help), and Peter and I have decided that we would like to reward her with some pocket money for the help she gives us.
The three of us had a chat about some jobs that she was already doing, and some jobs that she could learn to do, and decided on eight things that she can do daily to help out around the house. We talked to her about how it was important that everyone in our house has responsibilities to help make our lives run smoothly. Mayana know that if she helps me out with my chores in the mornings (ie washing up, sweeping the floor etc) then I have more time to play with her. She also knows that I shouldn’t have to be picking up her dirty underwear from the bathroom floor every night!
I’ve made a chart for Mayana, and each time she does one of her special jobs, she gets a stamp or a sticker. I actually plan on laminating this and sticking it on the fridge so that I don’t have to print one every week. Mayana has eight jobs she can do every day, plus I’ve given her an extra space for ‘Being an Awesome Helper’… so that I can reward her extra for things like looking after her brother, helping with grocery shopping… and okay… maybe I’ll be able to use it for a little bit of a bribe when necessary.
The rest of the jobs are mostly things that she was doing already, and a few things that she just needs a bit of encouragement to remember. She doesn’t do all of these jobs independently – for example she’s only really in charge of unpacking the silverware from the dishwasher… not the whole thing. She hangs the nappy liners on the clothes airer while I do the rest of the laundry (about 6 pegs per liner, if you don’t mind) and at this point she’s only really clearing her own dinner dishes from the table.
At the end of the week, Mayana will get 10 cents for every job that she has done. I’m under no illusion that her chart will be full of stars every week, but if she ever manages that, she has the potential to earn up to $6.30 in a week. We’ve talked to her about tithing and giving to God, and she’s excited to think that she will have money each week to put in the offering bucket as it goes past at church. We’ve also discussed saving money, and she’s already eyeing off a few Lala-Loopsy things that she’s quite like to save up for!
I’m excited to see how she goes with this. It’s been motivating so far in her keeping a much better attitude when I ask her to do a job. She loves going to get a stamp when she’s done something, and is offering to do things before I’ve even asked her. I’m hoping that it will help to ingrain some of these things as habit. As she gets older, she will get chores that are more age-appropriate, and these simple things will become more of an expectation – the things that she knows her her responsibility for helping our house to run smoothly. I also like the idea that she can learn about the fact that we don’t just always get things because we like or ask for them, and that sometimes we need to work hard and save to buy things that we want and sometimes even need. There are lots of learning opportunities involved in this too… learning about money is so confusing, and exposing her to different units of our currency is going to be good. She was so disappointed today that her fifty cent coin was only half of one dollar, and that she had to give both of her ‘dollars’ to the lady when she bought her cookie cutter!
Anyway… I thought that someone else might find it useful to use a sticker chart like this. So you can download it for free as a PDF printable if you click HERE!
I have only changed one thing from the original one above… I know not everyone has chickens so I’ve changed that to ‘feed the pets’.
If you use the sticker chart, I’d love to hear how it worked for your little ones!