Our new allowance system; the chore bank

Our oldest has 4 daily chores (feeding the dog in the morning, feeding the dog in the evening, emptying the trash and recycling once a day, and wiping down the table after dinner) and 2 weekly chores (trash night, cleaning the kids bathroom).  Generally, we would pay her an allowance at the beginning of the month instead of assigning a price to her chores.  But, every day, there would be reminding her to do her chores at least once.  Not to mention, dealing with teen attitude, talking back, and not listening.  

Our boys (2 and 3) don’t have formal chores, but we ask them to help out with things throughout the day like picking up toys, helping to empty the dishwasher, and so on.  About half the time we are answered with a resounding “NO!”.  And along with that we have brothers hurting each other, throwing toys, not following directions, and my favorite…. repeatedly getting up out of bed at bedtime.  The bedtime struggle goes on for an hour plus each night and it is exhausting

So “The Chore Bank” was born. This cost me $7 to make with items from the Dollar Tree. I purchased the glassware and 3 bags of decorative glass stones to fill the taller glass cylinder.  Kaela and I painted the glass with acrylic paint that we already had and decorated a jar for each kid and the tall one for the “bank”.

So how does it work? It’s a little different for Kaela than it is for the boys. 

For Kaela:

  • She earns a stone for each chore she does without being reminded. Once 7pm hits, any chores she hasn’t done that we have to remind her to do, she does but doesn’t earn a stone.
  • She can earn extra stones for going above and beyond without being asked. If she sees that things need to be done (empty the dishwasher, pick up the playroom, vacuum, etc) and does them on her own, she will earn extra stones.
  • She will lose a stone for attitude, talking back, doing things she knows she isn’t supposed to do (example: texting on her phone before 9am or after 9pm), or lying. 

For the boys:

  • They will earn a stone for following directions, helping us, being nice to each other, staying in bed at bedtime.
  • They will lose stones for hurting each other, not listening (after a warning has been given), getting out of bed at bedtime (limited to one stone loss per night).
  • If they lose a stone for hurting each other, then the stone they lose goes to the other child.  Example: Jack pushes Liam.  A stone from Jack’s jar goes into Liam’s jar.

At the end of each week, month, or whenever the jars need to be emptied, the stones are counted and converted to money.  For Kaela, each stone is $0.25.  If she does just her assigned chores every day, and doesn’t do anything extra or lose stones, she will earn about $30. I think that for now, each stone in the boys’ jars will be equal to a penny.  They both have piggy banks and love to put money in them, so this will (hopefully) work for them since they are too young to understand the concept of money and how much things cost.  

I’m hoping that this I’ll work out for our kids.  Does anyone else have a similar system? What do you do to encourage good behavior and to pay out for chores?

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