If there’s one thing almost all kids have in common, it’s dragging their feet when it’s time to do their chores.
Chores are an important and necessary part of childhood. We all want to raise kids who know how to “adult” when they move out of the house. But getting kids to do their chores can seem like a…chore.
If you’ve been struggling to get your kids to do their chores, then a chore chart can help. When you have an organized and scheduled list of chores, then they have a better idea of what’s expected of them.
We’ll also give you tips to help get your family on track with chores. You’ll have a more peaceful and tidier home.
Printable Chore Charts
We’ve created some free printable chore charts for you to use with your kids. Each is a customizable chore chart so you can make it work for your family.
1. Daily Chore Chart
Sometimes a list of things you expect to be done for the day is enough. This chore chart lets you label the week and then list out the chores your child needs to do before the end of the week.
This chart works well for older kids or kids who do best with the freedom of time management. It lets them decide when to get things done.
2. Daily To-Do Chores
This simple chart has each day of the week with room to create lists for each day. It’s a straightforward chore chart as you’ll just list out the chores for each day. If you expect your kids to take on a few basic chores each day, then this chart can work well.
3. Daily and Weekly Chores
This chart provides the most structure. It has a space for everyday chores and weekly chores.
You can fill in the everyday chores with tasks your kids need to do each day, like making their bed and putting away their school things. Chores that change every day can be listed underneath the correct day. For example, you’d put vacuum or take out trash in this column.
4. Preschool Chore Chart
This chart is simple enough for younger kids. Instead of words, it has a picture cue for each chore. There’s also a place for your child to check off each chore as they do it. They can also use a small sticker to mark off each chore.
5. Chore Chart for Two Kids
If space is limited on your refrigerator or bulletin board, you may wish to have more than one kid’s chore chart on a sheet. This chart has room for two kids. You’ll list out their chores and then they can mark them off on the day it’s completed.
6. Instant Money Chart
If you decide to pay your kids for doing odd chores, a money chart can make it easy for them to see what’s up for grabs. Simply print this Work for Hire sheet and fill in what the chore is and how much it’s worth.
Pin it to a bulletin board so kids can pick a chore when they need some extra cash. You can even put the money in small bags and pin it below for a nice visual incentive.
7. Board Game Chores
Why not make doing chores a little fun? This chore chart looks like a game board. You can fill in the spaces with chores and hang it on the fridge. Kids can use a magnetic marker to move along the path as they finish chores. You can even put a reward at the end.
8. Magnet Chore Chart
The refrigerator or a magnet board is a great place to hang a chore chart. Your kids will be able to find it easily and see what needs to be done. Once you print this chart, you can hang it up with magnets. Your kids can use small magnets for each chore to mark it done as they finish.
9. Chore Chart With Rewards
If you decide to reward your child for completing their chores, this chart will help. It has spaces for you to write each week’s chores and give them a point value. Your child will check them off on the day they’re done. You can write the reward and the required point value so your child can check their progress.
10. Family Chore Wheel
Another way to make chores fun is to add some unpredictability.
This chore wheel has common chores listed around a wheel and a wheel for parents and your child. To make the wheel, print it out on cardstock. You can laminate it if you want it to be more durable. Cut and use a metal brad to assemble.
Your kids can then spin the wheel to figure out what chores they’ll do along with which ones you’ll do for the week.
Tips for Using a Chore Chart
A chore chart for kids works best when you have a strategy for using it. You can’t just hand it to your child and expect everything to be done.
Keep the chore chart as simple as possible. Make it easy for your kid to see what they need to do each day. You may want to divide the chart by daily and weekly tasks. For very young kids, use picture cues.
Let your kids contribute to chore chart ideas. Explain what you expect of them, but give them the power to help you set it up. They’ll be much more likely to comply if they feel like they have a say.
Below are some age-appropriate chores for kids of all age levels. Choose chores that your kids can do and ones that will help you. You can print the list for easy reference.
Preschoolers and even some toddlers are not too young to start helping around the house. At this age, chores are more about making kids feel responsible and take ownership of their home instead of accomplishing tasks.
These chores are appropriate for kids this age:
- Pick up toys
- Put dry food in a bowl for pets
- Put clothes and towels in the laundry basket
- Dust unbreakable items
- Help pick up small limbs in the yard
- Set the table
- Make bed
- Water house plants
Once kids are in school, they can start being a big help around the house. Consider some of these for your grade school kid:
- Make their bed
- Load/unload the dishwasher and wash dishes
- Set the table
- Help with dinner prep
- Fold and put away laundry
- Pack lunchbox
Middle School Chores
Middle school kids are capable of taking on an even wider variety of chores. These age-appropriate chores for middle schoolers are great chore ideas:
- Cook dinner
- Mow the lawn
- Do laundry
- Clean bathrooms
- Take care of pets
- Wash the car
- Take out the trash
- Clean kitchen and refrigerator
Why Kids Should Do Chores
Kids need to do chores because they are a member of the family and live in the family home. It’s up to all family members to keep the house tidy and running smoothly. Kids also need to learn basic skills before getting out into the world on their own.
How to Get Kids to Do Their Chores
Getting kids to do their chores – and do them properly – is the most challenging task. You can start by making sure you’re choosing age-appropriate chores. Kids will avoid things that are too challenging.
You can also give your kids some agency. Maybe they can choose which chores they do or when. Give them some flexibility where you can.
Should Kids Get Paid for Chores?
It’s one of the most popular debates among parents: should kids get paid for chores? Some kids’ allowances are based on whether they do their chores or not. Other kids are expected to do chores for no compensation. So, who is right?
Why Kids Should Get Paid for Chores
When kids get paid for doing chores, they get experience earning money and learn the value of hard work. They also learn money management skills.
Why Kids Shouldn’t Get Paid for Chores
Most people who don’t pay their kids for chores argue that chores aren’t a job. Instead, they’re a fundamental part of living in a family.
Many parents also worry that kids will develop the wrong motivation for doing necessary tasks. They want them to develop pride and respect for their home and belongings instead of only taking care of things for money.
A Happy Medium
Some families opt to only pay kids for certain chores. Usually, kids get paid for chores they wouldn’t do every day/week. For example, they may organize the garage or detail the car. Everyday chores are required and unpaid.
Get Chores Done Without the Fuss
With a chore chart and the right mindset, you can end the fight over doing chores. As long as you communicate expectations, set age-appropriate chores, and keep them on task, it will be much easier to motivate your kids to get things done.