Updated: May 6, 2020
How I get my kids to do their homework and clean the house on the weekends.
We have a large family. 5 kids to be exact, and four of the kids are in school. Last semester we were really struggling with getting the kids to do their homework, turn in their work, and getting bad grades. Helping 4 kids with homework each night can get a bit chaotic. You can be trying to help one kid while two others are screaming at you for help with something. I was getting frustrated with everything that had to be done each night.
I met with one of the kid's teachers and they explained that teaching is one of the best ways to learn. I went home and thought about this and brainstormed a way to do this on the weekends. Nightly homework is a beast in itself, but usually only 2 kids have homework every single night. The big problem was getting them to do their special projects on the weekends so that they wouldn't have to do them on weeknights. I also wanted a way to get them to help clean up the house at the same time.
We also had a problem with them putting things off and taking 2 hours to do something that should only take 30 minutes to do. This was mostly because they would whine about doing it for an hour and a half before they would actually start on it.
I came up with this brilliant little schedule that would help us get both the homework and the housework done in 30 minute increments. The 30 minute increments helped with their attention span. I explained that their task assigned at that time had to be done in 30 minutes so that we could move on to the next task, and that when we were done with everything we would go to the park and play.
The kids were super excited about it when I showed it to them, and the park motivated them to get it done! Now, if you are also a bit OCD like me, I had an instruction sheet for the cleaning portions that explained exactly what they should do. This kept them from asking me questions while another child was supposed to be teaching me. I also had two cleaning buckets with specific supplies for cleaning the bathroom and the room.
Our schools have several different online programs for the kids to play games and learn at the same time. This is what the "Computer Study" was for. For instance, they have iStation, sum dog, and a word game that they could study on.
You may have to modify this a bit based on how many kids you have. This was perfect for 5 kids. You just place a child's name in each box for each time period. So if you have 3 kids, you would only have 3 boxes filled for each time slot. Then at each shift change, you give the appropriate kids the instructions with the cleaning buckets and send them off to do their job.
I also implemented these 30 minute time slots of study during the week when the kids don't have homework, or finish their homework early. I will assign them to iStation for 30 minutes, or sum dog for 30 minutes, etc. This keeps them from interrupting me when I need to help someone with an assignment.
This worked incredibly well for us. I hope it helps you as well! Let me know if you try it out and what you like about it!