By Todd Bernhard on Tue, 03/08/2011
It's a tale of two children. One is a rule follower and the other a rule breaker. I love them dearly, but it can be a challenge to get everyone on the same page. Thankfully, iRewardChart is a well made app that enables me to track their chores but more importantly, it encourages them to participate. Not only can they see their progress, as they perform daily household activities, but I've begun to let them checkoff their tasks as they complete them. The rule breaker actually likes this as she can get a visual and audible recognition and she has some control... that's her big thing. The rule follower likes it because it's structured, reliable, and most importantly, high-tech. Those paper posters and stickers are so 2000-and-late! I might even use a refrigerator or wall-mounted iPad in the kitchen, where it can do double duty for recipes and iRewardChart! (I've been wondering what to do with my original iPad, ever since the iPad 2 was introduced!)
iRewardChart works like a virtual piggy bank, where they get one or more stars based on how well they did their chores, which you can customize. I even let my kids help create their chore list, when helped gain "buy in" from them! Stars (or points) build up and can be redeemed for rewards which you can also customize.
There are two versions, a freebie for one kid with limited features and the $1.99 version I used. I've spoken with the developer and some of my suggestions, like an iPad interface and export/multi-device sync capabilities, are in the works. Today's high-tech, iOS-enabled children have grown up on apps. They need a motivation and reward system that appeals to their video game culture and iRewardChart is doing just that for my kids!