Disclosure :: This post is sponsored by FamilyTech, who designs Landra: a free app designed to help families simplify chores. Our review and opinions are completely our own.
Raising responsible teenagers is not a job for the faint of heart! In our home we work hard to teach all of our children that privilege comes with responsibilities and that when everyone contributes to the home it is a happier place. Wouldn’t it be nice if this could happen without daily angst and a constant explanation of expectations? Well throw away your chore chart from 2004 because the good people at FamilyTech are going to launch you into 2016, simplify your process and do it all on a platform your teen already loves – their phone!
Let me introduce you to your new BFF – Landra. When paired with your and your teenager’s smartphone she is going to help you communicate expectations to your teen and reward them for responding. Landra is a chore tracking app with an interface designed with your teenager in mind.
HOW IT WORKS
You download the parent app, Mothershp to your phone or tablet and send a text message through Mothershp asking your teen to install Landra. In Mothershp you can set up a fully customizable list of tasks that you expect your teen to do, complete with due dates, and assign a point based reward for each task. Next, you establish rewards that your teen can earn. We like to focus on experiential rewards in our house, but we also added specific items from our daughter’s wish list to motivate her. (Any time a new Rick Riordan book comes out I know extra chores will be done quickly!)
When a task is complete, your teen checks off that it is done and then you get a notification to approve (or not!) in Mothershp. Points are awarded to your child’s account when you approve the task. They can redeem their points for the rewards you have established once they have enough points accumulated.
WHAT I LOVE
In addition to the great flexibility of the parent app, Landra allows your teenager to add tasks to their own “to-do” list. I love that the apps act in partnership to encourage teens to think for themselves about what they need to accomplish instead of simply focusing on what mom/dad want done. Ultimately, I don’t just want a child that does chores like an autobot (okay, some days I want that) but a child that is learning to think and plan for themselves. Landra has the potential to motivate your teenager to grow in that direction and reward them for learning that skill.
“I love to add ‘just because I love you points’ to her account…”
Mothershp and Landra are fully customizable. There are some chores and rewards preloaded for you to select if you would like, but I found it much more helpful to set up my own. I love that you can set a time as part of the chore deadline. If your child hasn’t marked the chore done by the deadline, the app will not award points. And on the flip side of that coin, FamilyTech has added the ability to give a child bonus points. The possibility for bonus points is highly motivating for my daughter to try just a little harder on a task. I also love to add “just because I love you points” to her account when she has been having a good attitude.
The notification system works great for us. When I create a chore or reward a notification pops up on my daughter’s phone to let her know. When she completes a chore, I receive a notification on my phone. Mothershp also has a great message page for parents to approve chores and get messages in one easy place. (This is especially useful if you utilize their sister app ChoreMonster with your younger child!)
TIPS AND TRICKS
Talk to your child about your expectations. For instance, in our house we don’t reward you for doing your “job” which is called homework! Your teen will have the option to add that task to their own to-do list in Landra. One improvement for us would have been if the teen was able to add the task to their list for themselves, but the parent was notified and then assigned the point value.
Take the time to set up customized chores to really make the app work for you. The preloaded chores cannot be edited in the app version. (So the point value and the frequency requirement cannot be changed there.) You can create customized chores in the app and I do this for extra chores that pop up on a day-to-day basis. However, I suggest when you first start using the app that you login to Mothershp on your computer and establish your main set of chores. The desktop interface was easier for me to use when getting started and wanting to make numerous entries at one time. A great feature on the desktop version is the ability to copy a reward or chore for your other children (on Landra and/or ChoreMonster) and create it at the same time. Once your primary chores are established, the app will have you covered!
Landra has been a great tool for setting clear expectations with my teenager, holding her accountable and for rewarding her when she is managing time and tasks well. It eliminates the daily verbal reminding to do chores and tracks everything for you. As soon as it explains the appeal of SnapChat it will have answered nearly all of my teenager issues!