I’ve been thinking about setting up a reward system at home in some form over the past couple of weeks. It’s not so much for behaviour as 8yo, 5yo and Little T are pretty polite and well-behaved (almost embarrassingly so sometimes). We already verbally reward kindness and sharing between siblings and friends but I would like to encourage them to make their beds in the morning and be happy to help around the home. This might be taking their plates over to the sink after a meal or helping me put away the clean washing.
I’ve seen a few reward charts in action recently and I’ve read a bit about it in one of the Mumsnet books. I know what I don’t want which is a chart for each of them on the wall where it’s really difficult to earn a point and easy for it to be taken away. This seems to end in tears and tantrums and a negative feeling all round which is not the objective.
At school they seem to have a good house point system where house points are showered on them for simple things like holding a door open or for getting most of your spellings right and having neat handwriting. They often come home with at least 3 house points and I think all their friends do as well. It seems to be an extension of a ‘thank you’ from the teachers and it goes down very well and the children feel good about themselves. Each week the winning house gets to have a ribbon around the school bear and it is positioned in a prominent place so everyone sees it as they go about their school day.
I like the fact that the children are working together to get their house to win. The individual gets the house point but it is for the good of their house. I would like to bring some of this good will home.
Last Easter holiday the school parents association was raising money for a charity. The project was called ‘Helping Hands’ and the children were given a list of jobs around the home and they were encouraged to do little jobs and earn money for the charity. My daughter was only in reception class at the time but she was so delighted to tick off the jobs she could do each day that I had to make a copy for her big sister so she could join in, even though she was in a different school at the time.
I have raised the idea of a reward scheme at home with the kids and they are very excited. They want to call them ‘home points’. I like elements of the pasta jar reward system which is recommended by the Mumsnet Toddler book where you have 5 pieces of pasta in a jar but I don’t like that you can loose the pieces of pasta for bad behaviour.
I think that at the weekend or at half term we will empty and wash out our big perspex spagetti jar and decorate the lid. Then we can create a poster and decide what actions/jobs would warant a home point. We can then give out home points (pieces of dried pasta) for jobs done or kindness or sharing and when the jar is full we take a trip to the toy shop or book shop as a reward. They could also paint and cover the pasta shapes with glitter as a nice messy weekend activity.
I would love to hear your thoughts on what reward systems have worked in your home. I’ll let you know how we get on with this one. I have a good feeling.
Blue Sky at Looking for Blue Sky gives us some teenage tips.
Nova at Cherished by Me shares her tips in Encouraging Children to Read
Gemma at HelloitsGemma’s Blog gives us her working mum tips in This working Mummy’s guide to life
Maggy at Red Ted Art shows us how Baby Can Draw!
Chris at Thinly Spread gives us her Secret to Relaxed Parenting.
Cass at The Diary of a Frugal Family shows us how she teaches her children about other countries and cultures whilst having fun in America Day.
Helen at Cheeky Wipes gives us her tips in Fussy Eating
Mummy Beadzoid gives us some Parenting tips for the NICU/SCBU parent
Kelly at Domestic Goddesque shares her advice in Terrible Twos: tips for dealing with tantrums?
Ella at Notes From Home gives us her tip for encouraging children to tidy up at the end of the day
Tiddlyompompom shares her weaning tips in her oh so helpful guide to weaning.
Mymumdom shares her tips in Parenting Tips (Me Over The Edge)
Not so single mum at Diary of a Not So Single Mum shares her advice on doing what you feel is best for your child and your family
Jax at Making It Up discusses behavioural issues in a quandary in search of a tip
Bod for Tea shares her advice on finding a ‘helper’ to encourage your child to do things they don’t really like doing in Bunny says
Hayley at Simply Hayley tells us about Hugs and Love
Make Do Mum shares her stickability scale in Know Your Enemy