Saturday, September 27, 2008

My Best Idea Yet

I have stumbled upon my best idea for a reward system. I am always trying to convince force motivate the kids to do things. I have tried treats, tv time, extra stay up late time, money, all sorts of things. But they have all eventually stopped working, and are hard to keep up with, etc.

I keep waiting on this new plan, because I have been sure that it was just a fluke- that it wouldn't actually work. But it has been almost a month now, and we are still going strong. So I am willing to share. I don't know how it works, or why. Frankly, it baffles me. But hey- I'm not one to question something that works so magically.

It is the 'gold star' reward system. When someone does something good, they get a "gold star". As in I say "good job putting your seat belt on without help. You get a gold star". That's it. There is no *actual thing* that is a gold star- it is just me saying they get one. I continue to chuckle every time I say "whoever gets in the car and buckles their belt without help gets a gold star" and they all start running for the car to do their buckles. If you only knew how I used to have to beg, chase and corral them into the car.

I don't ever take them away for bad behavior- it is purely a reward, not a punishment. But boy, they get so happy and excited when I give them a gold star! And I don't have to keep up with anything or buy anything or remember anything. They don't accumulate and cash them in, they don't have any meaning other than mom telling them 'good job'. Which apparently, is enough.

8 comments:

Melinda & Matt said...

That is the nice thing about that age! We tried giving the kids shout outs and it worked once--then Caroline was unimpressed and she told Carter why he shouldn't be impressed....

Adam and Lisa said...

I used to give points to my students- "The first table to be cleaned up get 5 points" It was funny how hard they would work to get points that didn't get recorded.

Astarte said...

HA! That's great!!!! Here's hoping they don't start caring for a long, looong time!

Trent Family said...

Shanna, you have always impressed me. But now I'm totally convinced that among all your great qualities you are also magical.

Valeni said...

Just goes to show how much we all love to be recognized with positive words. That reminds me to say "good job" to people more often. Thanks Shanna, for your great insight. (Hope you have a very happy Birthdy tomorrow also.) Love you lots!

Kim said...

Happy Birthday! (wish I'd known without reading the above comment, but oh well)
I think you're amazing and will definitely be trying the gold star technique in our home.
I like your Food Friday idea too.
And, your lunches are adorable! I may copy that idea as well. Just call me the copy cat. But really, isn't imitation the most sincere form of flattery:)

Shanna said...

April- ha,ha! Trust me, if there was any magic in me, my feet wouldn't be sticking to the floor this morning! :)

Valeni- thanks for the bday wishes! We need to plan our next trip down to see you.

Kim- go ahead and copy- I am the queen of copy!! That is one of my talents- the ablility to copy others! LOL!

Kydon said...

Okay, I just had to post a comment on this one. Just so everyone knows... I think Shanna has tons of Magic. For instance, a lot of the time I can’t understand a thing the kids are saying and she magically can translate. Another example, when Aidan thinks his food is too hot, she can magically pretend to blow it, even from the far side of the table, and he will then eat it. If I try this, my efforts are met with resistance and screaming for more of mommy’s magical abilities. Yes, she has lots of magical abilities that I am unable to match and I can’t even think of half of them right now…