Chore Pad

App review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Chore Pad App Poster Image
Productivity app lets families set own tasks and rewards.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn how planning, organizing, and completing chores along with others in their household can help keep daily life running more smoothly. By using Chore Pad, kids can learn how taking responsibility for chores can be rewarding in many ways -- not only by earning the customized rewards parents build into the app, but also through building self-awareness and being a productive member of a team. Chore Pad can help kids see in a concrete way how their contributions to household work matter.

Ease of Play

Quite intuitive and easy to choose, assign, organize, and track chores. There are two basic modes -- one for parents (that shows an unlocked padlock in the corner of the screen) and one for kids (locked). Users have their own cards that list their chores, either in words or words with icons for kids who can't yet read. All information can be synched to Dropbox.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

Kids earn points, "payouts" for chores completed, and trophies when they reach a certain level of points.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Chore Pad is a system for assigning, tracking, and rewarding tasks that can help parents and kids know who is supposed to do what and when around the home. While any sort of family chore chart can get complicated, cluttered, and ignored, Chore Pad is an intuitive and easy way to choose, assign, organize, and track chores. If your family is on board with using organized tracking systems and rewards, Chore Pad will likely be a winner.

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What's it about?

Parents can read a thorough tutorial on how to set up the chores and the individual charts, how to assign points, and how users earn rewards. Each user gets a flip card tacked to a virtual cork board that they flip to view the number of chores completed and rewards earned. Parents must create each chore and then assign them to a specific person's card. Once that's set up, all kids need to do is go to their card and tap the date and the chore they've completed to record it.

Is it any good?

How well CHORE PAD works will depend upon how the people in a household use it, and if the system fits a family's philosophy on work and rewards. There's no doubt that it's a well-organized, simple system to use. The system rests heavily on rewards or "penalty stars" to motivate everyone to do the work, and some of the "work" included as possible chores to list are exercise, prayer, writing, and "love you" notes. Of course, you don't have to choose those chores.

The underlying message of this system is the idea that being motivated to do things requires reward or demerit -- which may not work for every family and hasn't been proven as an effective tool for building kids' long-term inherent motivation. If chores are a problem around your house, it may be worth a try. But expecting a total change in a family's chore habits due to any app may be a stretch.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Involve your kids in deciding who is assigned which chores before inputting assignments into the app.

  • Encourage everyone in the household to thank each other for completing their chores for a different kind of reward -- gratitude.

App details

For kids who love teamwork and playing with others

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