Monday, March 18, 2013

Earning their keep.

If you tell them they're naughty, then that's what they'll be

The key to this is putting a POSITIVE spin on everything AND BEING CONSISTENT!
We have come up with several programs, but never were consistent with them.... that equals failure, and a confused kid.

So, my mother-in-law came up with this program when she was a school teacher. She adapted it using the Super Nanny tools, and now most of her grandchildren are using this program. Which is nice, b/c no matter who my kids are with, it's consistent across the board with how they should act, what is expected of them.
The beauty of this program is that its two fold. It's a combination of rewarding your child and disciplining your child. 

The first thing we did was take everything away. Haha, not really, but we basically said from this day forward you will EARN everything you want, AND want to do.
To make this program effective, we role played these scenarios and what happens if they choose the right, or if they don't. They thought is was hilarious to 'act' out their wrong choices, and it really stuck with them.

So let's get started:

 Allow them to make good choices, and be rewarded for it. 

Lee and I sat down and made a list of 6 things (Connor is 6 yrs old) and 3 things (Riley is 3yrs old) that we really wanted to see changed in our kids. These were things that we felt would need a punishment if they were broken.

 These will become your child's GOOD CHOICES. They should be tailored for each child and the things they struggle with or have a hard time making good choices about. Post them where they can see these.

(we went ahead with 6 good choices for Riley, so that he could potentially earn 6 tokens too)
(I would advise using the 'stop' and 'obey' one. They will always come in handy when things come up you didn't plan for!)

Throughout the day they are aware of these choices they must make, and what happens if they choose the wrong.
IF they choose the wrong, they get ONE warning. ONE, and ONLY ONE. This must be this way for this to work. 

So, let's take for instance #2 on Connors chart. If he starts to whine, I will hold up one finger ( get one chance) and say these 'key words' to him-
"Connor, look at me. Use big boy words"
You will say the 'key words' that are in red on the chart. I try to avoid putting it in the negative. I don't say "No Whining", I say what's in red on the charts.
(He was happy to 'act' mad and get a warning for this

Once you have issued the warning, if they persist, then comes the consequence. 
They will go to a quiet spot, sit down and write the 'good choice' they are breaking(Riley can't write, so he just sits in time out)
I set the timer for 6 minutes for Connor, 3 for Riley (one minute for each year of age)  

If they talk, stop writing, whine, or do anything but write, I start the timer over and tell them "I'm starting the timer over". Otherwise, I don't talk to them while they are in time out....even if they are talking to me.

After the timer goes off, they will bring you the paper and discuss what choices they made, and should make. 

IF they DO stop when you told, then there is no writing. 
IF at the end of the day, just before bed, they have been able to choose the right all day and not go to time out and write, then comes the incentive. 
We go through each of the 6 choices and say
"you didn't whine today", "you didn't argue today", etc etc. 
For each one of the good choices, they will receive a gold token.

They will then trade their tokens for fun places to go outside the home. Tailor this to  your budget and what they want. It could just be the park....but they have to earn it.

Next step:

CATCH them being good.... a lot. Tell others you caught them being good and let them hear you bragging.

Throughout the day if they say 'please', 'thank you', 'yes sir', or any of these really nice things on this good manners list, then I will randomly give them a colored token.
Carry some of  these with you at all times. You have to be able to be random with these.
These tokens say "I've been caught being good". I won't give one every time, but pretty often at the beginning of this program to really drive it home.
They will get to the point where they expect it and will even say "I deserve a token". I explained that they won't get one every single time, but when I randomly catch them being nice or good.

Connor really had over kill at first. "Riley, I like your pajamas". "Here let me put toothpaste on your toothbrush", etc. Funny stuff.

One of the good manners is our bedtime routine. It was always a struggle. So now I put out this chart and I say "It's bedtime" and that's all. If they do the things on this chart without being told, they automatically get a token. 

So, after they collect enough colored tokens, they can trade them in for something fun at home.

These are the 'Red' & 'Blue' prize boxes on the list. Everything in the red box is from the dollar tree. Everything in the blue box is around $5. Again, keep it within your budget. You know what your kids like and want. Have these where they can see them.... dangle that carrot.

These are the 'banks' that we deposit the tokens in each night. One for gold tokens & one for colored tokens. Keep them separate, since they have different rewards.

That's it!
I promise you as you are consistent, and focusing on what they are doing right instead of wrong, they will want to do good!

Good luck!

You can get these tokens here at OrientalTrading,com Comment with any questions!

1 comment:

elizabeth said...

Awesome idea. We are definitely going to try this.