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House Rules For Malia and Sasha Obama Revealed: Are They Too Strict?

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President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, Malia and Sasha Obama, House Rules, Strict, Rigid

House Rules For Malia and Sasha Obama Have Been Revealed Over The Years

First Lady Michelle Obama has been very vocal over the years about the house rules she and President Barack Obama have implemented for their two daughters: Malia, 14, and Sasha, 11. Writer Jodi Kantor of The New York Times, has compiled a list of house rules that First Lady Michelle Obama has said in various interviews throughout the past few years. Some of the rules challenge the girls to focus on academics — even when they’re away from school. Other rules challenge the girls to be responsible and consistent.

In short, the rules are: 1) Non-School Related Reports: The girls must write reports about what they’ve seen on their trips, even if it’s not required by their school. 2) Limited Cellphone Usage: Malia may use her cellphone only on the weekends, and she and her sister cannot watch television or use a computer for anything but homework during the week. 3) Athleticism: Malia and Sasha have to play two sports: one they choose and one selected by their mother. 4) House Chores: Malia must learn to do laundry before she leaves for college. 5) Healthy Eating: The girls have to eat their vegetables, and if they say that they are not hungry, they cannot ask for cookies or chips later. Although many people have questioned whether or not the First Lady’s rules are too harsh, she believes they’re basic. “They’re not little princesses,” First Lady Michelle Obama said of her daughters. “It’s just basic rules, boundaries, and expectations that we would have normally.”  Below are some additional rules and further explanations for the aforementioned rules that First Lady Michelle Obama has revealed over the years.

They must do their chores. Though the White House has a large staff, Malia and Sasha have chores of their own. “They have to make their beds, they have to clean up their rooms,” First Lady Michelle Obama said last year. “They have chores to do, and they don’t get their allowance until they can prove that they’ve done their chores for the week.”

They can’t watch much TV. “We have clear rules about screen time and TV time. None during the week if it doesn’t involve schoolwork,” Mrs. Obama said. They’re allowed some TV time on the weekends, but even then “I try to fill up their weekends with a lot of stuff so they wind up missing that, too,” she confided. “It’s like, sports and games, and then, oh, it’s bedtime, so sorry you didn’t get your TV time in.”

No R-rated movies for pre-teens. While Malia, 14, has gone to a few R-rated movies (after they’ve been vetted by her parents), Sasha, 11, is not allowed to watch R-rated movies at all, and even kid-centric TV shows get monitored. “Nowadays, sometimes what’s on the kid programming, some of that teenage programming is pretty high-level stuff, too,” First Lady Michelle Obama said. “So you find that you have to constantly just be engaged with them and hear what they’re learning and talk to them about the shows that they’re watching.”

They can only have healthy snacks. “We have fruit. We have some cereals, some crackers, nuts, dried foods that are out,” Mrs. Obama said. “We try to put out healthy snacks in clear containers, because seeing dried fruit gives the kids the idea, ‘Oh, yes, if I’m hungry I could really have this or the nuts or the soybean things.’ And my whole thing is if you’re really hungry, you can have that. If you don’t really want it, then you’re not really hungry.”

They must play a team sport. “Sports is an expectation, and we say it’s an expectation because it’s about good health,” Mrs. Obama said. “It’s about learning how to play on a team, learning how to lose, learning how to win gracefully, learning how to trash talk and not get your feelings hurt.” First Lady Michelle Obama believes individual sports are great, but “I think team sports are important particularly for girls, where they learn the camaraderie of being dependent on other people for the victory,” she said during an interview in April. “And I think my girls need to learn how to compete. Whether they choose to do it long term, I just think it’s an important opportunity for girls to have.

Quitting is not allowed. “Kids tend to quit when it starts getting hard, which means that’s when they’re starting to learn something,” Mrs. Obama said during an interview this  year. “And that’s the tough time to continue to make them go to that tennis lesson. Even though Malia was complaining about it, she now loves tennis. And now she’s saying, ‘Well, I’m glad you made me keep taking tennis.’ ”

First Lady Michelle Obama fears making her daughters unsuccessful. “They’re terrific girls. They’re poised and they’re kind and they’re curious. Like any mother, I am just hoping that I don’t mess them up,”  she said during an interview. “Even when times are tough, in the end you are as happy as your least happy child.”

Do you believe the Obamas are too strict on their daughters?