July 18, 2012

Teaching Responsibility (Heart and Star Chore Charts)

Any lifestyle we wish our children to copy and embrace must be modeled and discussed.  I think character must also be a way of life, despite our own tendencies when we don't quite show the patience, diligence, and self-control that we should.

Character is in the way we raise our children.  Most of us, if we are honest, fail at being the right model for our children most days.  But really, those little failures do not matter.  We must keep trying.  We must ask for forgiveness.  We must teach our children because it does not happen by accident.  The teaching happens in every day life, as well as purposeful opportunities provided through books, movies, life examples, and a simple thing like a chore chart.

With summer's arrival, I thought it would be a great time to encourage my children to begin some basic chores around the house to teach responsibility.  I created two chore charts.  One is made of hearts; the other is of stars.  Both styles use the rainbow colors.

(These are just screen shots with a watermark on them...and funny lines on the sides.  Sorry!)

I chose just a few things I wanted my children to do daily.  Brushing teeth, making beds, tidying bedrooms, and cleaning floors were the basic chores I opted for.  However, I wanted to have a visual reminder that we are to be helpful (doing what is asked, like chores, without complaint), kind, and we are also to obey.
After getting the We Choose Virtues Clue Cards and Kids Virtue Poster to help us with character education (which we love, by the way!), I decided to model the positive language used by We Choose Virtues such as, I obey.  I brush my teeth.  I tidy my bedroom.  I am kind.

The positive language was the right choice.  It is empowering to the children and reinforces that they are capable of completing the tasks/behavior.  Of course, it also mirrors the virtue clue cards and poster they like so much, too.

I only used the chore charts for the first three or four weeks of summer.  The chores became habit, without grumbling.  The sticker incentive was only to reinforce the wanted behavior when the charts were first introduced.  

The charts excited the kids and developed the routine they needed to create habits.  

Would you like either of these chore charts?  You may choose stars with tasks (as seen above) or or hearts with tasks.  I also have a blank heart or star chart prepared so you can include your own chores.  They are free if you didn't already realize that.  Unfortunately, when I attempted to upload to Google Docs, the horizontal format was not accepted.  So you will have to email me and let me know what you would like or leave a comment with email address.  thissimplemom [AT] gmail [DOT] com

See all of the free PRINTABLES at This Simple Home.

We really like our We Choose Virtues clue cards.  In addition, I know my children's director at church is getting great feedback from the parents and teachers.  She is using the Virtue Flash Cards and has already told me she is hoping to buy the classroom kit for next year.  
~I also want to let you know that We Choose Virtues is having a sale for the month of July.  The Virtue Flash Cards are 35% off with FLASH35 code and can be purchased with or without Scripture.  You'll receive a free coloring book download, too.

~Teachers and children's directors, START25 will get you 25% off kits valued at $99 and over for character education through August.  (Community or faith-based)
~ SHIPFREE for free shipping worldwide!
~ VIRTUE15 for 15% off your shopping cart!

(As an affiliate with We Choose Virtues, if you do decide to purchase through the links here or from the sidebar, I do receive a commission.  I have partnered with the children's director at my church for a complete review of the faith-based flash cards, including drawbacks and highlights.  I will share that in early August.)

I would love to hear how you teach responsibilities and especially virtues!  Please leave a comment!
~ Annette {This Simple Mom}

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