01 September, 2015

Changing household jobs

When school started last week we changed the jobs the family members were assigned to do. I've seen some families change jobs every week or even more frequently, but our family works best when jobs are the same for months or even years. Generally when change has happened it's been one or two jobs added or changed, but this time we went for a complete re-write.
I do most of the baking, but David often bakes
something for Saturday morning breakfast and
sometimes afternoon tea on the weekend.

I wrote a list of all the regular jobs that happen in the house, everything that gets done, from the shopping and cooking to the washing and rubbish disposal. It was out there for everyone to see. I asked them to choose two jobs, preferably one that was daily and one that was less frequent. Names were listed beside the jobs, including the ones that David and I do.

So now we have different boys doing breakfast wash-up, rubbish removal, and table setting. We even have jobs that have never been done before by boys: ironing, folding of clean clothes, and cutting up of milk cartons.
David makes lunches.

The folding took me by surprise. When our oldest son was having difficulty choosing, I showed him the list and said, "Is there something here you don't know how to do and would like to learn?" To my surprise he chose folding. There's hope! Ironing was also a surprise choice by our middle son.

At the top of my list I wrote this:
Listed below are jobs done for the benefit of the whole family. 
Other jobs we do are self-care (shower, teeth cleaning etc.) or care for our own environment (room tidy, strip and make beds, put clothes away, manage school items and bags etc.), these are the responsibility of each family member for themselves. 
The purpose of teaching you how to do all these jobs is to help you learn how to take care of yourself and your living environment when you move out of home. Sharing these jobs also helps to share the load of caring for five people.
Looking at the list now, I think I've got a pretty good deal. The jobs are shared out very well across all five of us. I'm definitely not the housekeeper in this family! 


Ramona Hester said...

Did he write a lunchbox note on your behalf?? Looks like you've got yourself a PA.

Wendy said...

No, I wrote the note, but he edited it. I'd drawn a heart as in "love Mum" but he scribbled the heart out. A bit too much for an 8 y.o. to bear in his lunchbox. But the note did work, because his piano lesson was during his lunch hour.