WFMW: How to Play Chore Roulette With Your Family

Oh, it’s a fun game, for sure.

At least for Mom.


We started something right about the turn of the new year and it has been very successful. I like to call it Chore Roulette because I’m wild and crazy like that.

We have a daily chore chart and my kids are in charge of their own laundry every weekend. But every other Saturday or so we do a deep(isn) cleaning where we actually break out the mop and vacuum cleaner, scrub a toilet and change the sheets. And I’m always looking for ways to teach my kids about hard work and less entitlement. And this is doing the trick.

How to play:

Divide up chores that need to be done in your house. I pick the ten most needed each week–from mopping and vacuuming, to organizing to the dreaded toilets. There are 5 people in our family, so each player draws 2 chores. If the chores need a lot of supervision (like changing all the bedsheets and it’s not something our 7 year old can do, we rig the game. Because we can).

Rules: You get what you get and you don’t throw a fit. My daughter got mopping and literally did a cartwheel she was so happy. I have no idea why and my son got to clean toilets two weeks in a row. Bummer. May the odds be ever in your favor.

If you complain, you get a bonus round which is an additional chore. We set the timer for 1.5 hours and we all divide and conquer.

We turn up Toby Mac or the Frozen soundtrack (I’m sorry, honey) and we clean.

It’s a great way to spend a Saturday morning!


  1. 3


    Love this, as changing up chores is always helpful. I would be tempted to wait until my husband is home from work- he works 6 days. There is MUCH less grumbling when Daddy is listening! I linked up 5 busy bag ideas (#152), which could entertain them until he does comes home!

  2. 4

    Karen says

    And then one day they all leave home and you have to do all the chores again….though things are MUCH less messy! :-)

    GREAT idea!

  3. 6

    mel says

    We do something similar for chores during summertime. . . for some reason both kids loved to clean the toilets. They would fight for that slip. Go figure.

  4. 7

    Heather S. says

    I only have two children, both girls. Every other week they alternate their chores. I am always in charge of cleaning my bathroom (one girl has to clean the other three), the kitchen, the windows and mopping the floors. My girls take turns with the other bathrooms and then the dusting. My husband does ALL of the vacuuming. Everyone is in charge of changing their own sheets and my girls do their own laundry twice a week. Chores run pretty smoothly in my house. Like you, if you complain about the work there is to do, you’ll only get more. It doesn’t take long for kids to catch on to not complain.

  5. 9


    My kid is only 15 months old…but can I just say…I am so excited that he has taken an interest in the dishwasher. I’m hoping that continues until he is big enough to empty it for me 😀

  6. 11

    Valerie says

    How’s that working out with the 7 yr old? I can’t believe how much mine will complain and/or just disappear into his room with a book!

  7. 12

    Erin says

    Oh my goodness! I am 32, my brother is 38 and my sister is 42 and my mother used to do this every weekend when we were kids! It just brought back so many memories! Somehow I always ended up with dusting- she must have rigged it! :)

  8. 13

    Sarah says

    My mom always did this when we were young and people look at me like I’m crazy but I think it actually did make it more fun! Plus it helped that at the end she slipped a few more in there so we’d all get “Have a snack” or “20 minutes of TV” or something like that. Good memories :)

  9. 15

    Jennifer says

    My kids (currently 17, 15, 10 and 8) like to play “Oh! You ARE the boss of me!” For 10 minutes, the boss gets to give the other three chores that can be done quickly. Pick up all the legos. Sweep the kitchen. Whatever needs doing. When the timer goes off, the next kid becomes the boss and the work continues. I referree which mostly means I make suggestions to the youngest one who has no capacity to see messes of any kind still. Forty minutes later, they’ve made a big difference without much fuss!

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