9 Thrilling Games That Make Kids Want to Do Chores

Is your voice hoarse from telling your child to do their chores 10 times?

Building a system and enforcing chores is not always easy. But if you’re sick of forcing it, try a lighter approach. Get them excited and you’ll find your days of nagging are over.

Chore games boost motivation, but they also improve skill development as your kids do chores more often. It’s a win-win!

best chore games for kids to make cleaning fun

Gamifying Chores To Lift Mood & Energy

1. Make it Into a Family Relay

Divide your family into teams and break up a larger chore into smaller tasks. Each person does one smaller task quickly, then runs to high-five their partner. The team member then does the next task and so on.

The first team to complete the entire chore wins, and gets to pick dinner or an activity for the night.

For example, if you need to clean the kitchen. Each person in the team can:

  • clear counters
  • wipe counters
  • sweep floor
  • wipe appliances
  • load dishwasher
  • etc, until the kitchen is clean!

2. Escape Room Fun

Divide your home into rooms to clean. Then, give each person a time limit. Just like in an escape room, they must finish the tasks and make it out of the room in time. If they fail?

Create a funny consequence, like a funny dare to do (hug a sign or ask a neighbor for toilet paper)

3. Turn Breaks Into Minute-to-Win-It Adventures

straw minute to win it games for kids, teens, and adults; indoor

Every 10 to 15 minutes, gather the family to do a 60-second challenge that makes everyone laugh. Pick from the Easiest Minute to Win It Games that don’t create a huge mess.

You can take breaks with other games too:

4. Add An Element of Surprise to Their Chores

With Dice: First, list out the chores that need to be done. Assign a number to each chore 1-12. Find a pair of dice and have each player roll. Each person is in charge of the chore they roll!

Popsicle Sticks: Write chores on popsicle sticks. Then make a simple homemade popsicle. Kids eat the popsicle to see what their chore is!

Chore Wheel: Grab or make a chore wheel and have kids spin to find out what they’ll be doing.

Dart Game: Place post-its with different chores on the dart board. Kids throw darts and get the chore they land on

5. Play Tic Tac Toe

Play tic-tac-toe by having each person add their X or O only after they’ve completed a chore. See who can get through their chores the fastest and win the game!

You can do this game on a whiteboard too.

6. Work on Chore Bingo

Divide all of your chores onto a bingo sheet. Then, try to get five in a row individually or as a family. Once you meet the goal, choose a simple reward to celebrate.

7. Establish a Reward System

Another aspect of gamifying chores is giving kids a simple system to work with. It’s fun when they get to work towards something bigger.

downloadable blank customizable weekly chore chart template printable for kids

Here are great things to consider with chore systems:

  • Charts: Sticker charts work well for young kids while a chore chart will be better for bigger kids. We also love these routine checklists.
  • Tracking: You can also use tokens, poker chips, reward bucks, badges, or points to help kids keep track.
  • Reward: Pick a prize that works best for your family. Have them pick a movie for the night, pick out a fun coupon, or pay them for their chores when they hit the number you’re looking for.

8. Video Playback

Kids love watching themselves. So, set up your phone to video them while they clean. After they finish, let them watch the fast forward version of their cleaning.

They’ll think it’s hilarious, but also provide motivation for finishing the chore.

9. 10 Minute Clean Up

Finally, games aside, there’s nothing in my house that works quite as well as a timer. A 10-minute family clean-up brings urgency to the task. And the chores always get done faster than they otherwise would.

Last week, my son sat in his room for 2 hours procrastinating to clean it. Finally, I timed him for 30 minutes to see how much he could get done. He finished in 20. It’s the power of the timer!

Customizing Chores for Different Ages

When introducing chore games, it’s crucial to tailor the activities to your child’s age. This ensures that the tasks are both manageable and stimulating. It also keeps them from breaking too much stuff or you having to monitor constantly.

Adaptations for Younger Kids

For children aged 18 months to 3 years, turn laundry sorting into color matching. Kids also love rinsing fruits and setting the table at this age. Give them simple chores that make them feel helpful and empowered.

Challenges for Older Children

Kids aged 6-18 can handle more responsibility and may enjoy games with a sense of challenge and accomplishment. For this age group, consider increasing the complexity of chore games. Races are a big hit.

For all ages, each task is a building block in teaching responsibility, with the added benefit of making household duties an exciting adventure!

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