responsibilities, contributions & expectations


Post Updated June 12, 2018

I decided to update this post a little bit based on constant feedback I keep getting from this post all these years later. This little girl is now about to enter 6th grade and the boy is about to be a freshman. I can tell you that my philosophy on raising children, making charts and all that has changed – but not super radically. I can look back at these posts and see plenty of things I would have changed, but plenty of things that I probably might do the same. This if/then chart is one of them. I might revamp my consequences (but knowing my kids for 6 more years obviously helps in knowing now what might have worked better for them – hindsight is always clearer, right?) At the request of many, I have updated the chart below and made it pdf where the consequences are blank – you can either type or write them in and it’s finally available in my Etsy shop here.


I was a special education teacher for nearly 10 years. One thing that was constantly remarked to me was that I never gave up trying something for something better. If something wasn’t working, I modified it or scrapped it and tried something else. That tenaciousness has carried over into my parenting and home life. I’m constantly drafting and changing all sorts of things in our house. (which drives my husband crazy) Sometimes it’s because it’s not working, sometimes it’s boredom and sometimes it’s because I saw something that might work better.

I came up with this if/then chart a while ago and I’ve tweaked it many times since. Lately some things have happened in our home that have made us realize that this chart really wasn’t working for us and we were going to need to radically change some of the consequences. We’ve really figured out what consequences were working with our children, what were exacerbating the situation and not helping and what areas we really needed to focus on. The primary consequence that works with both our children is a removal from the situation. They both just need that time to collect themselves before they can listen and enter back into family life. My husband and I also just needed help with being on the same page. I came up with some key phrases (maybe like our family mottos?) and verses that would match. (these verses come from Desiring God’s children’s memory verse system we’ve been working through). So here is our updated version:

updated if/then expectations chart

The next big thing I worked on was our new responsibility/contribution system. It will be a few weeks before we get it hung up and all the kinks worked out, but here is a broad picture of it:

new contributions/responsibility charts

Like I mentioned before, I used the idea from here and tweaked it for our family. We basically divided home stuff into two categories: responsibilities (you do these because you are a member of this family with no “reward”) and contributions (these are things you can earn money for).

Every day they see their chart:

individual responsibility/contributions charts

There might be extra responsibility things that I add daily and for the contributions there might be specific things they need to do that day (mow the yard) or it might say “pick 2” and they get to choose.

When they choose, they are choosing from this list of contributions:

contribution magnets

As they finish a contribution, they put it on their cookie sheet. At the end of the day, they add up how much money they earned and put it on their time sheet. On Sundays, they are paid their commission for the week.

daily/weekly time sheet and tech boards

Hopefully by next Sunday (their first payday) I will have 3 change purses for each. One for saving, one for giving and one for spending. For my son, who is almost 9, he will be working towards his first savings account deposit. When he saves enough to open his account, he will start putting all his save money in the bank towards a car when he turns 16. For my daughter, who is 5, we are going to decide on one large item that she is saving for. She desperately needs to learn that in order to get something big, you have to wait for it. (patience is not her strong suit!)

The other thing on their cookie sheets are their technology cards. Each Sunday they get a new card with 10 punches equally 45 minutes of plugged in time. When the card is punched out, they are done for the week. No new card until Sunday.

Like I said, we just unveiled the system today, so this week is going to be a trial and error. They’ve known about the tech cards for a while so they thought it was kind of fun. They probably won’t be laughing come Thursday when they are punched out! đŸ™‚ But I won’t be either!

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  1. Would love to have this in a format that I could type in my specifics for my family and use at our home. LOVE this idea and would love to implement here.
    Do you have this in a template format that you would sell?

    1. Hi Leigh Anne, Thanks so much for your compliment. I actually don’t have a copy anymore (we upgraded computers since then), but you are welcome to use what you see and copy the idea for your family. ~ aimee

  2. These are amazing! I’m so glad I found them. I have been thinking and looking along these lines and you created what was in my head. Thank you!!

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