Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Getting through the summer (happily) with your kids

Summer is here.

For some of us, things won't change much, except our kids will be sitting around the house with nothing to do while we go to work.

For those of us who are fortunate enough to be home with our children, we are either dreading all of the spare time and the summer " boredom"  blues, or we are looking forward to some good, quality family time with our kiddos! I am the latter!

I have been planning and waiting for summer break almost as long as my kids have! They are 9 and 6, and have been anxiously awaiting all the "fun" things we're going to do all summer long. As summer break approaches, I had to come up with a system for my kids to get their chores done, help around the house, keep positive attitudes and still have fun!

I know there will be pool days, park days, lazy days, theme park days, ice cream outings and much more. I want to enjoy all these pleasures of summer right along with my kids, but I don't want my kids to think all of these privileges come easy, and at no cost.

Over the past few weeks, I designed this clip-chart, star system. For every positive thing my kids do, they can "clip-up" for one star. The list of "positives" are shown below. And for every "negative" behavior or thing they do, they "clip-down" or lose a star.

As you can see, this list includes everything from good behavior to chores. They are constantly encouraged to "clip-up" for all the positive things they do throughout the day. The stars are tallied at the end of each day and input into the iRewardChart app on my iPhone. They can use those stars as currency to buy rewards. The kids and I came up with the rewards together. We talked about each fun thing or activity they would like to do, and then we decided how much it should "cost". The reward chart we came up with is also pictured below. Everything from going out for ice cream, to an hour of T.V. time is on this list.

There is one stipulation to cashing out, they must always have at least 50 stars in their "account" which I keep track of on my iPhone with the iRewardChart app. This is an incentive to save, and not deplete the account.

We have had this system working for nearly two weeks now, and my kids are absolutely loving this game of earning stars and buying rewards! Neither one of my kids have "purchased" a reward yet, they are both working vigorously on stock piling their stars so they will have enough to do all of these fun things they want to do!

It is a win-win! My kids are being held accountable for everything they do, and in return they are also learning the value of earning something!

They will have bad days, but they know they will always be held accountable, good or bad, and they know exactly what is at stake for everything they do or say! It is visual and instant.

Enjoy your summer, and let me know how you are keeping your kids happy, healthy and responsible!

1 comment:

Michellerobin1979 said...

how did this work for you? is there anything you would change or do different?