I've been thinking long and hard and trying to come up with a system that works for us. And one that I will stick to, because even though I HATE to admit it, I'm the one who usually fails these systems. I just stop doing them or am not consistent.
So I needed a new one, one that was easier for me and simple for the kids.
After seeing how they did things in Daughter's class, I got an idea. I came home and pinterested away a million ideas and then came up with my own with the things I had so I didn't have to get dressed and go to the store for supplies.
Yah, It get's that bad.
I'm not a liar.
Anyway, we needed one system for monitoring TV. So I came up with a really simple clip system. I painted four clothespins. Two pink, two teal. And then I labeled two "TV" and two "Game" for computer or video games. Each clip stands for one show or twenty minutes of time. They only get two a day, they can lose them due to poor behavior and they do have the chance to gain one extra clip of their choosing. Once they're gone, they're gone. They just remove the clip and drop it in the jar when they're ready to cash in. Oh and of course they are only allowed to use their clips with chores, homework, help for mom and reading is done. It has worked marvelously. They don't argue anymore...there's no more one more show or five more minutes. I LOVE it.
This is a behavior chart. They each have four clips daily and in this order: green, blue, yellow and red. They start on green every day (I just clip it to the top of the clipboard) and depending on behavior, they have to change their clip to the next color each time they are naughty. At the end of the day green gets three stickers, blue - two, yellow - one, and red gets no stickers and loses all Tech Time priveleges for the rest of that day (if they haven't used them yet) and the next. Every certain number of squares I made one square more distinguished and once they reach that square with stickers they get to pick something out at the dollar store, stay up late for a movie night, go get ice cream, etc. Oh and if they stay on green all day, besides the three stickers, they also get a "bonus" clip that they may use for an extra tech time the next day.
I also use Behavior Bucks to monitor behavior and chores. We just cut rectangles out of scrapbook paper and decorated them with stickers and happy faces. They earn the bucks randomly for being sweet, talking nicely, sharing, good manners, listening, helping, good days at school/church, any behavior can really earn them, but not every behavior always does. It's just random. They also can lose them by having poor behavior, arguing, not listening the first time, sibling bickering, rude behavior, etc. I require them to pay me for things like trips to the park, going to a birthday party, etc. I also "charge" them behavior bucks (and sometimes real allowance money) for certain things. For example, we have an end of the day clean-up. I set the timer for 20 minutes and they have that time to go around and clean up all the messes they didn't keep up on throughout the day. I only ask once. When the timer beeps, I grab my big cardboard box and put anything that's not put away in the box. Those toys are now mine and they have to buy them back from me using behavior bucks. They keep their bucks in a plastic cup that they decorated for themselves.
I give daughter five dollars a week for allowance. I don't make her earn it by doing chores because I feel like chores should just be part of being in our family and keeping up our home together. I give her allowance to start teaching her the importance and value of money and wise habits. I don't tell her what to do or not to do with it. So she gets $5 a week, but she can lose her money by doing certain things. For example, one time we were at a friend's house and she didn't want to clean up before it was time to leave. I told her that she could clean up or I would clean up, but she'd have to pay me $3. She thought about it and decided to save her money. Same idea with staying up too late. If she infringes on mom and dad's time after bed, I charge her. It comes in handy having the allowance to work with. Also when she wants something at the store, she is free to spend her own money on whatever she wants. If she doesn't have it, then she usually tries hard to save up for the next wk or so to earn it.
So these are a few of the systems that we've been working with this year and so far they are working great. I got a lot of them from trial and error, the book Parenting with Love and Logic, and various ideas I've seen on the web.
So what about you? What do you do to help keep your kids on track? How do you discipline?