Making Chores Fun with Chore Charts

We know that our kids would rather do anything other than their chores. Hey, we as adults usually feel the same way! You’d think they would have made the definition of chores more uplifting and positive, instead of “an unpleasant, but necessary task.” Instead of, or at least in addition to forcing these unpleasant tasks upon our kids, let’s try to add a little bit of fun and motivation into the mix. Not only for their sake, but also for ours.

Chore charts are an easy way to incorporate not only organization and clear communication for these everyday tasks, but they also bring some color and personal accountability into the chore world. We can’t guarantee that your kids will jump for joy next time they need to unload the dishwasher, but we can help you find something unique and helpful that will hopefully turn the chore frown upside down.

We’ve rounded up chore charts from all over the place, including Etsy and a few DIY options, so you can find a chart that will work perfectly for your space and your family.

1. Magnetic Chore Chart

Your kids might learn to love doing their chores if their chore chart is as simple, easy to understand, and cute as this one from Etsy shop Abbie’s House. Made from wood and metal and with the ability to personalize your chart in several ways, not only will your kids love moving the magnets from one side to the other, you will love having a chore chart that doesn’t stick out like a sore thumb in your home.

TIP: Don’t rule your household chores with an iron fist. Be sure you’re not expecting too much out of your kids and that you’re still allowing plenty of time for play and other activities.

Consider every once in a while adding a “fun” activity to their chore chart, such as baking cookies or an extra 30 minutes past bedtime, just to keep your kids on their toes and give them more motivation to check their chore chart regularly.

2. Wooden Chore Chart

If whimsical, personal, and versatile are what you want in a chore chart, then check out this option from Etsy shop Back40Life. This handmade wooden chore chart can be completely personalized to fit your family, with hooks that hang matching chore tags.

TIP: Have your kiddos grab a random handful of tags at the beginning of the week, hang them up on their designated hook, and get them to work! Each week can be a different set of chores, so there’s not the boring, redundant task of taking out the trash week after week after week. There’s a higher chance of your kids doing their chores happily if there is a good selection of different things for them to choose from. Kids love variety and choices, so let’s give them what they want!

Also, if you choose to include you or your spouse’s name on this chart, bonus points. Not only will your kids be encouraged by seeing their parents doing chores alongside them, maybe your significant other won’t forget to mow the lawn this summer, and you’ll actually dust during naptime instead of Instagramming for an hour.

3. Dry Erase Chore Chart

If your kiddo thrives on the reward system, then this fun and simple dry erase chore chart from Etsy shop Tickled Peach Studio might be a perfect option. Include their name and their favorite theme, such as tractors, trains, rainbows, or birds for a bright and special hangable chart that they’ll be proud of.

TIP: Each week fill out the name of the chores that your child is responsible for. Together talk about a special reward that your child will receive at the end of the week if they complete all the chores on their chart. It can be anything from a one dollar bill, a trip to the ice cream shop, or a new toy. Let them participate in the decision of what the reward should be, which helps promote critical thinking, personal responsibility, and a sense of autonomy. Write in the reward or attach a picture of the reward to the chart, providing a motivating visual.

Let them help you check off the boxes with the marker each day they complete a chore. If you make it through the week, enjoy the moment when your child receives the special reward they worked so hard to get. Give them a small taste of the real world!

4. Door Hanger & Clothespin Chore Chart

For a thrifty DIY option, hit up the dollar store for clothespins and a thin door hanger. Write one chore per clothespin and label one side of the hanger TO DO and one side DONE. Clip the clothespin where appropriate and then let your child move it over when the chore is finished. You can’t get simpler than that.

TIP: The advantage of having a door hanger as a chore chart is that your child can’t “forget” about their chores. Every time they go in and out of their room, they are reminded.

Keep whatever chore chart you are using clearly visible and easy to access. Out of sight, out of mind doesn’t help when it comes to keeping your kids on track with their chores.

5. Paper & Magnet Flap Chore Chart

For younger kids who can’t yet read and are just learning the ropes of helping out around the house, make this DIY chore chart that appeals to them both visually and tactilely. With pictures in addition to words and magnetic closures that young kids will love opening and closing, this makes a great “My First Chore Chart.” Visit My Name is Snickerdoodle for detailed instructions on how to make this chore chart.

TIP: Believe it or not, even 2 and 3 year olds can start doing chores around the house. Here are some age appropriate chores that even the youngest kiddos can participate in:

  • Clean up toys.
  • Feed pets.
  • Put dirty clothes in laundry basket.
  • Wipe up spills and messes.
  • Dust furniture.
  • Clear their table after meals.

6. Mason Jar & Popsicle Stick Chore Chart

Even though the example in the photo looks involved, you can easily make a simple chore chart from two mason jars and a handful of popsicle sticks. Just write one chore per stick until all chores are written down and put the sticks in a pile. Then either you or your kids pick out which chores they want, and toss those sticks in the mason jar labeled TO DO. When the chore is completed, the stick moves over to the DONE mason jar. If you’re interested in learning how to create the chore chart system shown above, check out The Crafted Sparrow for detailed instructions. 

TIP: Don’t discount the power of letting the barter system help your kids with their chores. If your son picked a chore stick that he doesn’t want to do, but his sister picked one that he wouldn’t mind doing, then let them hash it out by trying to barter with each other. Feel free to take a step back and let your kids trade chores if they want. If all the chores get finished, then does it really matter who did them? As long as it wasn’t you!

7. Simple Paper Chore Chart

If you’re interested in a straight-forward, no-frills, cut-to-the-chase chore chart, then these chore charts might be right up your alley. With nothing but the basics, each tear off weekly sheet simply lets your kids know what to do and where to document it.

TIP: If you’re hesitant about starting an allowance for the chores your kids complete, then read Should You Allow Allowance? for some extra insight to help you make the best decision for you and your kids.

8. Fabric Chore Chart

This fun fabric chore chart is perfect for young kids who love visual aids. With a variety of pre-made and blank chore and reward cards you’ll be able to customize this chart every week. The stars attach with Velcro and the durable design and high quality fabric assure you that this chore chart will last through the rough and tough toddler phase to the elementary school years.

TIP: Keep in mind that when assigning chores for younger kids, you can’t expect them to complete these tasks independently. There will be a good deal of supervision and assistance on your part. That’s ok, simply lower your expectations, realizing that you’re not just forcing your child to dust end tables, you’re building autonomy, self-confidence, and teaching them how to contribute as part of a family.

9. Note Pad Chore Chart

This one’s for the tweens and teens who are too cool for magnets and flaps. This note pad is perfect for using as a chore chart and gives just the right amount of practicality mixed in with a bit of humor.

TIP: Don’t forget that praise goes a long way when it comes to kids and chores. Despite what some of your kids might say, they ultimately do want to please you. So even though you had to remind your son twenty times to clean up his room, still encourage him while he’s doing it and give him a nice pat on the back with a few loving words when he’s finished. Kill ’em with kindness and they might think chores aren’t half bad. 

For more chore ideas, tips, and tricks, be sure to read 10 Chores For Big Kids, Chores That Teach Responsibility, and Get Your Kids to Do Chores and Enjoy It

Photo Credits: MAIN IMAGE: Dreams To DoTickled Peach Studio, Back40Life, Dollar Store Mom, My Name is Snickerdoodle, The Crafted Sparrow, Abbie’s House

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Dani lives in North Carolina with her two preschoolers. She is a stay-at-home/work-at-home mom who loves to clean and organize anything and everything. Her happiness is found in Jesus, days at the spa, and combating dark chocolate peanut butter cups with everyday workouts at the gym. She owns a wedding, lifestyle, and freelance photography business, Dani Nicole Photography.

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    Keith Baker


    Great article! It sounds like might be of interest too! It’s a game that helps teach children of all ages early development skills using household chores & family fun activities.


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