I've noticed, too, that when they have free play time all day, they can get a little crazy and naughty. So I want to deliberately teach them some more chores this summer, thinking that the school year will be too scheduled to allow for much instruction. I like this balance of work and play for them. And I've noticed that friends with older children reap the reward of real help around the house, too.
I might make a new chore chart for these things, or maybe just post the lists where the adults can refer to them.
1. make her bed
2. sort, fold and put away laundry
3. iron hankies and napkins
4. dry dishes
5. set the table, pour water
6. wash the bathroom floor
7. shake rugs
8. put away toys
9. dust/wipe the steps
Goals for the 6-year old to learn:
1. clean sinks
2. spray and clean mirrors/windows
3. use sewing machine [I need to find an owner's manual for her machine first]
4. vacuum a room
5. dust a room
6. sweep a sidewalk
7. wipe a counter or table - wringing a cloth
8. organize an area such as a drawer or desk of art supplies
What the 4-year-old can do with minimal assistance:
1. make his bed
2. set the table
3. put away toys
4. dust baseboards
5. put away the trashcans
6. sort laundry
Goals for the 4-year-old
1. dust/wipe the steps
2. fold laundry
3. sweep a sidewalk
So these chores will be put in the day whenever it seems reasonable. The other structure we have is a one-hour quiet time some time after lunch. The children are required to be on a bed or sofa with books, no toys. They may sleep or read or daydream, but they must indubitably be quiet.
I hope this makes a good summer for us!