Rachel’s family’s continuing adventures in creating a cooperative environment of participation in household tasks — without coercion, punishments, or rewards. I’m so excited to hear how things are going and thinking wildly about how we might adapt her family’s ideas.
This story gave me hope for how Mikko might (eventually) respond. Sage is a little older (turning 10), but I know Mikko already has plenty of resistance to the very idea of chores.
Sage was feeling the shift away from endless free time and into more participation.
He (very politely) complained about it. “Mama, I don’t really feel like I have any free time anymore.”
So he and I came up with a plan. We each made a chart. We divided our activities into three categories: chores, free-time, and work/homeschooling. Then we kept track of how we spent our time throughout the day.
At lunch time we totaled up each column and compared our charts. Sage was both amazed by how his own days balanced out and also by how little free time I took that day.
I didn’t say a word. He looked it over, noted the surprises, and tossed the charts. He hasn’t brought it up since. Because he saw how much free time he still has. He understood that he is both helping out and chilling out. It’s all in balance.