Of all the chore systems we have tried, this one has lasted the longest and had the most success. It’s basic, easy to remember and quick but most important, it provides a reminder to work with and train my kids how to do the jobs well. Here is how it works:
We take 10 minutes either in the morning or right after lunch to tackle a task. These are basic areas that need regular attention but would be neglected if I did not have a schedule. Now that I have older kids, I send them to one area of the house while I train the little ones in another area.
Monday is Mending and Maintenace. That means if a button has fallen off a shirt or pants have a ripped knee, we practice sewing and mend it. If a light bulb needs replacing or a gash in wall needs spackle, we do it then. We don’t need to cross every item off the list, just work at it for 10 minutes and get done what we can… together.
It’s good to have a running list of items that need doing so that you can delegate a small job and help with a bigger one. This does not mean that we leave every maintenance and mending job for Monday’s, it just means that once a week, we are prompted to look around and care for things that need our attention.
Tuesday is Tubs and Toilets. Pretty self-explanitory but while we are in the bathroom cleaning those fixtures, we do the sink and mirrors too, because, why not? We have lots of bathrooms so we spilt up and I rotate which one I help with so that each one gets a really good clean every few weeks. I do not inspect the bathroom being cleaned by the older kids, though I work along side them often for refreshers. The point is to be done in 10 minutes and move on with the day. It is not an exam, it’s a contribution made to the household. Somedays they give their best, other days, not so much. That’s life.
Wednesday is for Windows and Walls. I have these amazing cloths called KAWOS (kleen anything with out streaks) you get them wet, wring them well and wipe ANYTHING! No streaks! So everyone gets one and we spread out, washing windows, doors, doorknobs, marks on walls, door jambs, ect…. fun and done! Moving on….
Thursday is to Tidy Thoroughly, putting all those items that are not where they should be back in their propper place. Stuff just seems to migrate through the house. I am an offender too. Remember 10 minutes only!
Friday is Floors. Vacuume carpets, sweep and wash what you can of the rest in 10 minutes. I often do a good sweep and vacume with the kids during this time, then wash the floor once the littles are in bed.
Sometimes we miss a day, but we get it the next week so it is still better than what happens when we have no plan at all.
This is not an exhaustive list of all the things that need doing in the house every week ( dusting is not on the list and never gets done….I should really add it in somewhere, what day rhymes with dusting? 😂) And I do often have to clean a toilet between tuesdays, but the point is that the kids are learning that these jobs are easier when done regularily and that they are not all that hard to do, even the little kids can help.
By using alliteration to assign these tasks, I dont need to take my list with me when we travel, we all know what needs doing each day, no matter where we are in the world.
Whats your cleaning schedule? Any tips to share?