6 Tips for Raising Hard Workers — 19 Comments

  1. Pingback:Best of Parenting Linky: August 2014 - Grown Ups Magazine

  2. This was great! My kids rotate to a new job every Sunday. Do you think its easier to keep the kids on the same job, so they are the “expert”? How do you choose because some chores are harder than others. And how do you split up your inside chores? Everyone hates having dishes week here.

    • We have developed a sort of…ladder…of chores. They start with easier, and move up as they show themselves able. All of our kiddos started with feeding the cat inside. Then the dog, because that included filling the big water bowl. Then filling cow and sheep buckets outside. Then eventually feeding and watering the chickens. Gathering eggs is another easy job, but washing them is tough (we don’t want them broken!) so we usually split that up. We’ve tried “rotations” a few times and it was just confusing to everyone. Now we usually stick with a job for at least the whole school year and make job changes over the summer–when we’re not so rushed and on autopilot in the mornings–before the next school year. Unless we have something new come along.

  3. This is such a great post and timely for me. We moved to 5 acres half a year ago and although the kids have become a bit more of the outdoor kind I find that I am the one doing the gardening, weeding and cleaning out fo the chicken coop. I don’t really mind but I think I am doing a dis-service by not asking my kids to do it along with me. I am going to pin your post. BTW the sequence of pictures illustrates your tips and philosophy rather well. Love the look on the Ladybug’s face when the wash tub falls (I probably would have gone a rescuing about then – defeating the whole purpose) – then the look of self satisfaction as she crosses back over with the problem sorted all by herself. Well done. Nice to find your blog via the Clever Chicks hop.

    • So glad you came over and enjoyed it! There’s no easy answers here–we do what we do every day, over and over, and eventually they get it and bend with it. But the hubby and I often remind ourselves that we’re TRAINING–not just teaching. Meaning we have to teach them, and then make them do it over and over again until they get it. πŸ™‚ And a lot of times their attitude at the beginning is TOTALLY different than their attitude once they’ve pushed through to the end!

  4. I came over from the Chicken Chick’s site. Our kids have always done chores, too. Sometimes they ask for some kind of “payment”. I just tell them that they get to eat, have a bed to sleep in, and have clothing. They must do chores simply because they are part of the family.

    • Yes, we say they do chores because everybody helps. I don’t just wash my own clothes and dishes. I don’t just buy my own food. We are all a family, everyone pitches in.

  5. What a great post!! My sons are 2 & 4 and they already have their own responsibilities around the house – simple stuff like stocking toilet paper, helping take the recyclables out, feeding the fish, etc. It makes me sad when I meet parents that are shocked about my husband and I “making” our kids clean up after themselves, let alone giving them responsibilities around the house. It is beautiful to see other families, such as yours, who include the entire family in the upkeep of the home. Your kiddos are lucky to be learning such valuable lessons! So glad to have come across your site on The Chicken Chick. πŸ™‚

    • Thank you for the nice compliments! Part of me sometimes feels like we expect too much, especially if we start to compare ourselves to other families, with “chore charts” for brushing teeth and putting on clean clothes. Then I think, WOW, it’s only an hour of their day. Surely they can give 30 minutes, twice a day, to be an active part of the household?!

      I think you have to constantly assess where YOUR kids are, and hold a high but reasonable standard. For our littlest one 15 concentrated minutes is a lot. Our Cowboy on the other hand gets up even before I’m out of bed and would have his and all his siblings chores done before breakfast if we let him.

  6. I love how you said that attitudes should be addressed after the chores are done. I found that works better for us as well!

    It also gives us time to think and pray about how we are going to respond to them, rather than react in the moment. Very wise words.

    I must say, all your pictures are fostering a desire to have a far ourselves, but I know that sort of life is not for the fainthearted or for those of us who deal with health issues!

    On the other hand, our youngest daughter would love to have some sheep and chickens someday if we get our won property. Her daddy is a city guy but she has already appealed to his practical side by informing him that sheep could help mow the lawn:D!

    This is a lovely blog. I am stopping here for the first time via June’s blog!

    • Thanks for stopping by!

      I think it’s SO important to teach our children to be stable-minded and steady when it comes to their responsibilities. Sometimes we have to learn to push through a problem and/or do things we don’t like simply because they have to be done. That’s not popular thinking these days, but we think it’s important.

      I must say, the farm is just…perfect…as a tool for us to get all these life lessons and biblical character training–except for the parts where it’s really hard, expensive, and emotionally draining. πŸ™‚ There’s so much too it and sometimes I think folks enter into the idea of homesteading with more romance than realism. (I’m pretty sure we did!) But that doesn’t mean it’s not worth it! We think it is, so we keep plugging away. I tell people thinking about it for themselves that it’s great, just start small and have an exit strategy before you start. If it works out, great! And if it doesn’t, that’s ok too.

  7. These are great tips. I like that you deal with the heart problem, but after you make sure they do what needs to be done. Thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks for reading! I think it’s part of building strong character–we can have feelings, issues, emotions, that need to be talked out but we CAN’T let them derail all our responsibilities. I think it’s a key part of teaching emotional maturity and self-control. The world doesn’t–can not!–come to a screeching halt every time you have a problem.

  8. Great post! I’ve noticed that just being outside at the same time they are makes a HUGE difference. Even though I’m not helping them, they know I’m out there working too.

    • Yes, I think it’s HUGE that they feel like what they’re doing is contributing–not just busy work while you do something else. Plus, when you’re all together you don’t miss those moments that open up in the middle of things–especially with the boys. Sometimes I’m amazed how I get into these deep conversations about life and death, salvation and grace, creation, and other HUGE topics, just because of something that came up while filling water buckets. They’ll talk while their hands are busy much easier.

  9. Wow you really live on a farm! That’s amazing~ I am new from southern charm. I would love for you to check out my blog and hopefully follow me back! Nicole

  10. These are really good tips. Just what I needed to read at this beginning of a new routine: school is out… I always dread change in the routine…. πŸ™

    hugs xx Crystelle
    Crystelle Boutique

    ps: your daughter is adorable! Can you loan her out for a week or two?

    • Yeah, we try NOT to change the routine as much as possible because it throws everyone off so much.

      And thanks, we kinda like having her around here too! πŸ™‚