DIY: Daily Task Chart
Returning home after a summer of traveling means getting back to our regular schedule and creating a regular routine again. Nothing reminds you the importance of a daily routine better than the start of a new school year. Especially since our little guy is in FIRST GRADE now! That means going from an afternoon half-day schedule (school started at 11:30am and ended at 2:50pm) to a morning full-day schedule (8:05am start time and 2:30pm pick-up time). After a few days of me attempting to prepare breakfast, pack lunch, take care of our dog's needs, try to wake up the little guy to make sure he's ready to go to school on time, I decided that he needed some motivation to get things done on his own so that I can retain some sanity in the mornings. Getting up in the morning involves 1. actually getting out of bed when it's time to get up (we're still having trouble with this one) 2. feeding his fish 3. making his bed 4. brushing his teeth 5. getting dressed 6. finishing his breakfast 7. putting his dishes away when he's done with breakfast and last but not least, a new thing we're adding to our morning routine 9. going #2 every morning before school (that's a topic of it's own). S does all these things every day without complaint most of the time, but the purpose of the chart was sort of like a check-list for him to make sure things get done and that they're getting done in order and on time. At this age, children don't have a grasp of the concept of time so for now there's a lot of "go go go! hurry up!! we're going to be late!" every morning in the house. But at least now, with our chart, I can be like "ok, what's your next task? get it done and put a star next to it!" He's been enjoying putting stars on his chart after each thing he does. Even though in a way it's taking up a bit more time because he wants to put a star after everything he's getting done, I love seeing him excited about it. I've been wanting a task chart for a while now, and I love this one they have at Land of Nod. I love the felt material and all the colors and illustrations, but at $80 and knowing the tasks might not be everything we need and the reviews saying there aren't enough stars to cover an entire a week, I decided I needed to make our own. Inspired by that cute design, but also knowing I would probably end up a big mess with felt, I walked into Michael's with an idea in my head but no real plan for materials. I thought "hmm maybe a big cardboard is enough. I'll just make everything with card stock." And ended up leaving with:
a big framed cork board. Ours is 35" x 23" (less than $15)
some felt letter stickers (around $6)
a box of zots ($5) - you can use a glue gun too I just didn't know where mine went
some craft paint (I used some wall sample paint because I wanted particular colors, and some Martha Stewart acrylic craft paint I had at home)
paint brushes or rollers (I used both)
card stock paper (for the task cards and pockets if you want them) - I love PaperSource
here's my little helper painting after he came home from school. He did an amazing job with the roller!
As always, I enjoyed illustrating the task cards the most!
paint and layout complete. I used a white and red stripe paper for the header (just an fyi)
little guy gets $1/week allowance for completing the chart. Still young to understand money, so he actually thinks coins are cooler than bills lol
room-for-improvement: I think it would look better with bigger stars, but I settled. Got the hubby to hang it on the wall and we are done!
Happily putting a star after every task he accomplishes
I still think felt would be a good material for this project (to use velcro) especially for younger children because the push pins might be a little dangerous without supervision. My son is old enough to handle them and loves sticking them in the cork board, but if you have younger kids consider tape or tack. The design can be simplified if you don't want all these different colors and columns. Have fun making your own board/chart!