Kids and chores is such a difficult situation.

You want your kids to have chores, do chores and have a legacy of working, but what you want and reality often sets in pretty quickly.

The kids either fight, fuss and ignore chores turning the entire kid chore dream into a nightmare.

Or it is just easier to do the chore yourself.

Neither of those situations ends up with the desired result!

how to get kids to do chores everyday - Kids Activities Blog - child carrying clean laundry out of laundry room
Kids can actually do chores daily and not complain! it IS possible.

How to Get Kids to Do Chores

Today I invited back an expert in this field to help us. This mom of 10 kids has spent years developing a realistic and doable chore system that the entire family will embrace.

Her name is Ashley Buffa and she runs the organization, Freedom Moms. If you missed our previous conversation on Kids and Chores, then check it out!

Watch Video on How to Get Kids to Do Chores

Your kids really can do chores daily if you plan it right…

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Chore Strategy for Families

In this video Ashley and I talk about how to get kids to do chores. She has a 3 step plan…

1. Realize that it is Possible to Have Kids Doing Chores Daily

It is easy to just assume that kids participating in daily chores without drama is just not possible for every house. But the truth is that kids doing chores is important to not only them, but you. And it IS possible…even if you just take Ashley’s word for it right now and convince yourself later on!

If one woman can do it, then I can too!

Ashley Buffa

2. Set the Tone for Chores in the House

I think about all the times that I have complained about doing something around the house or done a task hastily with a little grumpiness and realize that the tone I have set is not one that inspires kids to jump in and help! Ashley has some really good ideas for improving the tone to encourage help vs. have it run in the other direction.

One thing is to give up the chore martyr role. To start getting more excited about things yourself so it can rub off on the kids.

3. Set a Hard Time Limit for Chores

The best way to start this is with something “magical” called the 5 Minute Family Clean Up

You gather all of your kids. However many or however few you have into one room. You have a timer. An actual timer. It can be your phone. It can be a timer from the kitchen. You set it for 5 minutes and say, “OK kids, listen up! For 5 minutes every person in this room, including me, we are going to give it our all and get this room as clean as possible. 5 minutes is all I am asking. If I see you slacking, you will get 5 more minutes. So give it your all. Give it 5 minutes. I am turning this music on…no matter what the state of the room is after 5 minutes we will be done. I am doing it with you. Let’s have a good attitude and see how clean we can get this room in 5 minutes.”

Put on some music that is upbeat and fun.

When the timer goes off, the music goes off and you say, “OK kids we can be done now.”

Ashley Buffa

After the 5 Minute Family Clean Up one of two things will happen:

  1. The kids get done and say “bye” and they leave.
  2. About 50% of the time the kids will say “can we have some more time to finish the room” or “can we listen to the end of the song”.

Either way, the room is cleaner and the kids got involved without complaining!


Ashley spent the next few years figuring out a way to make household chores part of their daily life even though they didn’t live on the prairie. And through the years, she has learned a lot about what works with modern kids and what doesn’t.


Bottom line with kids and chores is if it is harder to GET them to do the chores than it is to do it yourself, then it is not sustainable.

If it is more stressful to make sure they do those chores than just adding them to your to-do list, it won’t work longer than a few days…and isn’t good for your health!

In order for this to work, it has to work! I know that sounds obvious, but in reality so often we set up a chore system for our kids that we cannot possibly maintain. It takes way too much drama to continue.

And drama is draining the last little bit of energy we have!

Best chore system for kids from Smart Kids Chore System by Ashley Buffa - shown is the entire package of things included in the system
Taking your chore system for kids beyond the 5 Minute Family Clean Up!


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