If you can't get your kids to do chores, you may want to enlist some help. It may surprise you, but I am now turning to pirates in my hour of need. Here is how I can get my kitchen floor clean.
This is what you do:
1. Sweep your kitchen
2. Tell your child(ren) you are going to build a ship. The ship-builders must carry the kitchen chairs to the living room and place them in a circle. Gather a few props or costume articles for your journey and set sail.
3. Sit on the chairs or in the middle on the floor. Have your children do ship maintenance - set sail, row, fish for food, do lookout duty, etc. Make a lot of comments about what you see, hear, feel, while aboard ship to enrich the experience. (here is a great glossary of pirate terms in case you need some: http://homepage.mac.com/crabola/PirateGlossary/Menu22.html)
4. Ahoy! A rival pirate ship is attacking! Describe how the pirates are dragging you each out of the boat into the kitchen. The messy buccaneers are forcing you to scrub their deck!
5. Use rags or sponges and a bucket of plain water (use a mild detergent like dish soap if desired). Teach your child to dip the rag and squeeze out excess water. Wipe down the floor!
6. When it is almost done, whisper to your child that you are about to make an escape. Have your child signal a deep-sea ally to help you (dolphins, mermaids, sharks, etc.) make your escape.
7. Steal some pirate booty and flee back to your ship! (we usually steal some hard-tack or some books to read on board)
Now share your magic chore tricks! Be creative and give me your very best.