A couple of weeks ago the boys and I made a large calendar of the week. We decorated it with stickers (smiley face for when Daddy is home, trees for park day, a shirt for laundry day, etc.) and posted it prominently in the living room. I think it has really helped both boys, and Jonathan especially, in understanding how the week works and knowing what to expect. Now when Jonathan asks if we're going to the park, I can direct him to the calendar and ask him what we're doing today! The ownership has made for fewer complaints.
The first week that we had the calendar up, Jonathan came to me very distressed. "We should have made a bigger calendar!!!" he wailed. Why? "Because we're almost done!!" What a fascinating glimpse into his head! He thought that once we hit Saturday, the calendar was over. When I explained that with a weekly calendar, we go back to the beginning and do it again, he was thrilled.
A really nice side benefit of the calendar is Jonathan's new willingness to help with chores. Monday was Laundry Day, and so he wanted to do the laundry! By himself! Well, ok, with minimal assistance! It was just so exciting!
And you know what? He CAN do the laundry, with minimal assistance. He and Thomas sorted the clothes, Jonathan got his stool and dropped all the clothes into the washer, I helped him add detergent and showed him how to turn it on. He alerted me when the washer was finished (something I always forget!) and once I put the wet clothes in the basket, he dragged them to the dryer, put them in, and started it himself. This is a very capable four year old. I'm sure that once the novelty wears off, it won't be so exciting, but hopefully by then it will be habit.