What chores and allowance are appropriate for an 8-year-old?

My son is eight and I need to get consistent with his chores and also discipline. When I do ask him it usually ends up being a bartering thing and I tend to loose. I know if he had consistent chores and he knew what the punishment was when he did not listen or cooperate then it would be better for the both of us. It would also greatly help me if I could depend on him even if it was the slightest thing like cleaning his own room. He is demanding too much time on his xbox and I really do not look forward to trying to get him to go to bed. What is a good time for him to go to bed? I tell him nine and he always says right after this or something like that, I am at my wits end and wish nanny 911 could come save me.


Asked by zena84790 at 3:11 AM on Dec. 5, 2008 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

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Answers (13)
  • I think you are right on track with 9pm. When 9pm comes around, tell him to get off the video game/tv and then if he doesn't, immediately unplug it. After a few times of not being able to save his game before losing it, he'll get the point. Chores that would be appropriate at that age: cleaning his own room, taking out the trash, raking leaves, putting dishes in the dishwasher/washing dishes, setting the table/clearing the table, vacuuming, taking his laundry to the laundry room/putting it away when it's done, etc. Except for keeping his room clean, I would probably only give him one or two additional responsibilities per day. You want to allow plenty of time for homework and just being a kid. I'd say punishment wise, use what he loves. For everyday/every chore that he does not complete, he loses 1 day of x-box (take the controllers off the game and lock them up so there is no sneaking and no temptation).

    Answer by Kimebs at 6:04 AM on Dec. 5, 2008

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  • My daughter is only 17 months, so i dont really know.

    BUT... i still remember when i was a kid and what my parents told me.

    I had to clean my own room, sometimes with help of my parents.
    I sometimes (when it wasnt too heavy for me of course) had to take out the trash.
    Helping with the dishes after cooking/eating.
    Helped my mom with the grocery shopping and put everything in the cabinets/fridge ect.

    Me, and my brother always had to go to bed between 7pm and 8pm.

    We didnt have any electronic games like xbox or any of this .. sorry for the word.. crap.
    Well we had an NES, but it was in the living room in a cabinet. We were allowed to play with it (together with the parents) for maybe once a week. And it didnt bother us at all.. Because we were "Outside"-kids. Always out with friends ect.

    Answer by m.robertson811 at 7:06 AM on Dec. 5, 2008

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  • My son is 7 and a half. One of the things he is responsible for is cleaning the toy room. His bedtime is 10:00. On occasion I may let it go to 10:30. He gets up for school at 8:00. Some may think that is late, but it's 10 hrs of sleep and he does great in school so it works for us. I must admit though, the toy room is about all he cleans. He tried to do a chore chart once, but I'm so anal about they way i like things to be cleaned that I usually just do it myself lol. I have been meaning to give him more responsibility, he needs it, i just haven't gotten to it yet...

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:18 AM on Dec. 5, 2008

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  • We have a chore list in our kitchen. Some of the things are loading the washer, emptying the dryer, sort clothes, wash and dry the dishes, set and clear the table, keep their rooms clean, bag and take out the trash and of course, bring home all their homework and it must be done before play.phone and computer time. And they switch everyday so no one is doing the same chores everyday and it works really well for us because we are consistent with it. Also, my DH and I do the chores on sunday so they get a break too.


    Answer by LovingParent08 at 8:02 AM on Dec. 5, 2008

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  • My children do most of the chores. My daughter 9 and my son 11 earn 15 dollars every two weeks. They do laundry, kitchen chores, clean the living room, bathrooms and their rooms. They would get paid even if they didn't do their chores. It is their "allowance" not thier wage. They are expected to do chores because it is character building and needed. They are wonderful kids who do a lot for our family.

    Answer by SusieD250 at 10:58 AM on Dec. 5, 2008

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  • WOW!!! My kids are 14, 12, 8, 6, 5 and 3 and my 8 year old picks up the clothes in the bathroom, and the hallway. And I am telling you that is a battle ALL by itself!!! I applaud all of the mothers who can get their children to do chores, and do them right!!! I have 5 boys and one girl and I am lucky if the dishes get washed (right) the floor gets swept, the trash gets taken out, and their rooms get cleaned...I have to go back over almost EVERYTHING!!!!!

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:54 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

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  • First off...stop asking and bartering!!! YOU are the parent here.
    While it's natural for kids to test their boundaries and question things, it should also be clear where the boundaries lie.
    I have an eight year old boy myself. At eight, everything he does is an exercise in personal responsibility. He clears his dishes from the table, he makes his bed, etc. These chores are the building blocks of greater chores.
    I start my son's allowance out at $10/wk. He loses .50 cents for a chore infraction (not making his bed) When we first started, there were weeks were his allowance was a measly $1.50. He learned quickly that the .50cent deductions add up. You just have to be firm in not providing any additional pocket money.


    Answer by Anneran at 3:14 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

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  • As for the bedtime...My son goes to bed at 8:30. After homework is done, he has until 7:30 to do whatever he wants, play Wii, play on the computer etc...but the last hour of the night is used for calm activities: watching tv together, reading etc....that way he's not pumped up from playing action games etc..upon going to bed.
    Just please remember, YOU are the parent. When you tell him now, that means NOW. Not "right after this..." or "in a minute..." Be firm with your rules. Picking and choosing is for small battles. Bedtime is not a time to pick and choose a fight. Stand your ground.
    If being firm doesn't do the trick, take the gaming system right out of his room. Make him earn it back by proving to you that he can go to bed when he's told to.

    Answer by Anneran at 3:14 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

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  • I don't give my son an allowance - I never needed it when I grew up so he'll never get allowance from me. I do teach him to make his bed, put away his toys, put away laundry, setup the table and run the dishwasher. This week started to teach him to wash the dishes in the sink just so he knows. He also helps outside by watering the plants. If my nephew is visiting and they make a mess, then they are both picking up toys and swiping the floor. It takes a while for them to get the routine down but it is either that or no video games or TV until it is done.

    Answer by Avon_Calling at 12:48 PM on Dec. 6, 2008

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  • We don't give our kids allowance. They are 8 and 3. They put away their own laundry. The clean up their own toys. The 8 year old also has to clear the table. Instead of money, they get to hear the word "yes" if we feel like letting them. When they ask for something like a movie, first we check that they've done their chores. If the chores aren't done, I'll add one to complete before getting what they want in addition to the one that isn't done! I'm also straight with the 8 year old and teach her that in 10 years, she'll be in college and need to take care of this stuff herself. She loves knowing that she's preparing for her grown-up life.


    Answer by Pnukey at 12:43 AM on Dec. 7, 2008

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