methods to our madness

Mar 30, 2010 by

as elias has gotten older, and in turn, more mature (as well as at times, rather difficult), i’ve been scouting out a good way to help him understand his responsibilities and the rules of our house. a few months ago, i realized i expected him to know the rules of the house without ever actually sitting down and explaining them to him (uh, dur?) as well as the reasons why we should share, and speak respectfully, etc.
after seeing what some of my friends are doing, doing some reading, and perhaps an occasional tivo fast forward through supernanny, i created a reward chart and some house rules so elias could have something concrete and tangible rather than “because i say so.” i hate “because i say so.” it’s so lame to not know why we say the things we say.
i have to tell you, i’ve been more than pleased with the results so far. he now understands much more fully that he is expected to participate in making our home run, as well as expected to behave (and not behave) in certain ways. in turn, i get to teach him a little more about how Jesus was (“no, elias, Jesus didn’t punch bad guys. he loved them even though they were bad.”) and how i expect he (and piper) to be. his rewards are things he would get anyway: a movie, a treat, a trip to the playground; but knowing that they are a direct result of positive behavior and good choices, he feels really proud of himself. and he is one eager kid to help because that behavior has been met with such positive praise. it kills me! he helps unload the dishwasher, just because; he cleans his toy room without being asked; he clears everyones plates off the table after dinner instead of just his own. AND he doesn’t ask for a sticker every time. he’s just learning about participating.
below are the stratton house rules that are on our fridge for elias to see and learn from. and his reward chart is there for him to add stickers to and get excited about (orrrr throw a fit when he’s not close enough to a reward yet. lol. a work in progress, people).

i want to know: what methods do you use? or what methods did your parents use? i know there are methods to our madness as parents, and i’m always curious to cultivate/refine/develop/improve mine.
so come on, whatchu got??

Related Posts

Share This


  1. danielle

    i'm not even close to that yet! eek. i still trying to figure out what i need to pack in my hospital bag! :)

  2. Leigh

    okay so I am late on this and I don't have kids so this basically doesn't count at all.

    One of the bigs we have read and then went to conference on talked a lot about using "good" words instead of "bad" words. I love the idea of having a redo after your child has demanded something and telling them that they need to redo and use their good words instead of their bad words. If the child doesn't do that (which I'm sure will happen to me more times than I care to think about) then you have a "think it over" which is like time out but you sit the child next you and tell them to please be quite until they are ready to have proper redo. That's our game plan, give me about 18 months and I will let you know if it actually works or not.