Wednesday, June 01, 2011


Back when we lived in the flat we asked either Marcel or Charlotte to set the table each night while Thomas and I still did all the cooking. Setting the table is a five minute task but Marcel and Charlotte (who were 9 and 7 at the time) could easily spend half an hour arguing why they shouldn't be the table setter - they'd done it the night before (even if they hadn't), they'd helped cook, they'd been abducted by aliens etc etc. Eventually, because we found it hard to remember whose turn it was Thomas printed out a plan and stuck it on the fridge door. Overnight the arguing stopped. It was written in stone - no one queried anything. The chart was checked and the plan executed because a written plan is never wrong! Result!
Similarly after years of begging kids to read more, explaining the merits on their education of reading more and arguing that reading wasn't boring, ad nauseum, the chart solved that issue too. Give them a book and say read that and they procrastinate till the cows come home. Give them a chart marking a daily number of pages and without an argument, the book is handed back usually early, finished.
I'm considering mocking up a chart containing all household chores. It could work, no?

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