Schools out for summer which is why I am writing this post on How to Limit Screen Time for Kids and Free Printable Chore Charts. Because I don’t know about you but I just might lose my mind if we don’t have some sort of system going that outlines what is expected of my kids and most importantly, what is NOT expected—that they will waste their lives away sitting on their butts in front of electronics the entire summer.
If you’ve read my post on Why My Kids Don’t Have Social Media then you know that I’m pretty passionate about the negative effects of social media and electronics on teens. And boy oh boy is it so darn difficult to limit electronics usage when you are a mom who has all of her kids home during the summer.
A few months ago I created a kid’s printable chore chart and it is working so well for us that I wanted to make it available to you for free!
Weekly Chore Charts (with social media restrictions typed in)
Weekly Chore Charts (blank version)
Let me tell you how we use this chore chart to distribute our family chores and also limit our kids daily electronic usage to 1 hour per day per kid (or at least we try really hard to and this helps tremendously!)
First of all, you will need clipboards — I bought these sturdy black ones with gold clips from Target — and this 3 pack of kitchen timers from Amazon
1. HOW WE LIMIT SCREEN TIME
So as I mentioned, limiting screen time and electronic time is important to us as a family. But it is also very hard, especially in the world we are raising these children in. It takes more and more effort from the parents to make sure their children aren’t wasting away their lives in front of a screen and that can be exhausting and disheartening. We try very hard to explain to our children that it is important to “create before the consume.” What does that mean? Well quite simply, when you are sitting in front of a screen you are consuming. When you read, write, play an instrument, play with a friend outside, paint, draw, and use your brain, well you are CREATING. And the world needs more creating and less consuming you guys. So as you will see, on our kid’s weekly chore chart there is a daily checklist that reads NO ELECTRONICS UNTIL. You can use this however you want but I do encourage you to use it! What should you be encouraging your kids to do before they can have screen time? For us, they have to practice a musical instrument, read, do physical activity of some sort, and they have to do daily chores. After that, they are allowed to set the clock on the kitchen timer for one hour and have screen time. When the timer goes off, they are done for the day.
Now obviously there are days when we are lax about these rules—when they have friends over and on special occasions or holidays. But in general, we try to have this plan in place and adhere to it and it is never more important to have this plan than during the summer! Hope this post on How to Limit Screen Time for Kids and Free Printable Chore Charts helps you understand how we attempt to stay sane during the school year and summer by having some sort of routine!
2. HOW WE DIVIDE UP CHORES
Each week on Sunday night or Monday morning, I print off our chore charts. Each day they have Daily Chores that they must complete and weekly chores they must complete. I like to cycle out those daily and weekly chores to different kids each week. So for example, if your daily chore one week was take out the trash and someone else’s was unload the dishwasher, the next week we would switch those two. Weekly chores are used for bigger house chores like vacuuming, mopping, dusting, stripping bed sheets, cleaning bathrooms, etc… daily chores are reserved for smaller chores such as making bed, packing lunches, unloading the dishwasher, and putting away laundry.
3. HOW WE REWARD OUR KIDS
So how do we get the kids to buy into this plan? Well we use it as a means for them to earn an allowance! If they check of their chores every single day and adhere to the rules for no electronics, they can bring us their sheet at the end of the week and earn their allowance. We pay $1 per year per week so our 9 year old gets $9, our 11 year old gets $11 and our 13 year old gets $13.
Hope you enjoyed this post on How to Limit Screen Time for Kids and Free Printable Chore Charts. If you would like to read more parenting posts from CC and Mike you can readMotherhood is a Marathon and Let Them Fly Momma Bird. You can follow us on Instagram or subscribe to our blog to never miss a post!