Chore Sticks for Kids: A Super-Easy Chore System that WORKS!

Trust me when I say, I've tried about a million chore systems with my kids!  ....And none of them ever worked!!  I figured it was just me and the way I was presenting it.  Why did I constantly have to be nagging to get them to do their simple chores??  I'm a firm believer that kids need to do chores around the house,  They need to have some type of responsibility and learn how to work hard.  These are life lessons that I feel is my job to teach them. 

While searching around for a new chore system to get the kids involved in helping out around the house I came a cross a stick chore idea.  All the cleaning tasks were laid out on a table, you could pick a few and then get the job done. I thought this was great idea, I wouldn't be telling the kids what to do, they picked their job and knew what was expected.  So I put my own twist on this idea and so far it has been working great!!

How our Chore Stick System Works

I've seen chore sticks used in many different ways...but this is how we use them.

I have 1 jar full of Popsicle sticks that have all the chores listed on them. Everyday -Monday through Friday & sometimes Saturday if we are home with no plans-  the kids choose 2 sticks from the jar. The sticks they chose are there chores for the day. They have that day to get them completed -before they can play with friends, go outside, or have electronics the chore needs to be completed. 

They each have their daily chores of making their bed and keeping their own rooms clean - so these chore sticks are for around the house and on top of their daily bedroom chores. After their chore sticks are completed it goes into an empty jar and ready to be picked the following week.

It's that simple and it really works!  I think it works so well because they are the ones choosing the chore and they are in charge of doing it.  They know exactly what needs to be done and how to do it. They are in charge of when they do it but they know their fun activities don't start until chores are done for the day.  

What I love about using Chore Sticks

I love using chore stick because they are easy for everyone! 

They are easy for me because they are super easy to make and maintain. All you need are a few popsicle sticks, marker, and a few extra minutes to write chores down and put together. Plus, this is a very effective way to get a few chores done around the house.  Its a huge help to me to have a few little helpers getting some house chores done.

It's also super easy for the kids. Each chore stick has only one simple, clear task. I make sure they learn how to do it, but once they’ve got the concept, they know exactly what’s expected. It helps them to have only one thing to think about at a time. And because they’re the ones that pick the sticks, they feel more in control, making it easier for them to do the chore without my nagging. 

How to Prepare Chore Sticks & List of Chores

Supplies: - Mason Jar, Jumbo Craft Sticks, Permanent Marker

Write out the chores you would like your kids to do on each stick. I make simple chores and break up the chores that need to be done in each room.  It keeps the kids on track and its easier for them to complete the chore the way it needs to be done rather than rushing through the room thinking they have so much to do.  Place chore sticks in the jar ready for them to pick. SUPER EASY!!

Here is a list of all the chores I currently have on our sticks:
1- Clean sink,counter & mirror in 1/2 bath
2- Clean 1/2 bath toilet
3- Mudroom - shoes, dust & mop
4- Wipe down kitchen cabinets
5- Wipe down Island & Bar Stools
6- Wipe down kitchen baseboards
7- Dust living room
8- Vacuum Rugs & Couch
9- Vacuum Stairs
10- Clean loft - dust & vacuum
11- Clean sink, counter & mirror in main bath
12- Clean toilet in main bath
13- Clean tub in main bath
14- Take out all bathroom garbage
15- Sweep & mop main bath
16- Sweep & mop 1/2 bath
17-  Dust railing
18- Pick up playroom area
19- Pull 50 weeds
20- Pick up toys in backyard
21- Vacuum Car
22- Sweep Kitchen
23- Wipe down kitchen garbage can
24- Wipe down light switches & door knobs
25- Unload Dishwasher

Once your chore sticks and jars are ready to go and you’ve explained the new chore system to your kids, what’s next? PATIENCE! 

Chore sticks are an excellent way to get kids doing chores.....But kids are still kids....and chores are still chores. It takes a little time to get kids into a good rhythm with chores. It also takes lots of practice (and repeated direction) for them to learn to clean well. Eventually they will get the hang of it. Stick with it and be patient! The results will be worth it!!


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