Worried your kids will get too much candy on Halloween and rot your teeth? We’ve had pretty good luck using the Switch Witch to reduce our kid’s sugar load. They get to select as much candy as they want to “trade in” and we give them a gift in exchange (errr…the Switch Witch does). If they just trade in a little candy, then little gift (stickers, tatoos, etc). All their candy=big gift (something they’ve been wanting around $10). Obviously, you can make whatever rules work best for your family but that is what has worked for us!
I’d give credit were credit is due, but I can’t recall where we got this poem.
While volunteering with my daughter’s Kindergarten class, I was so inspired by the good behavior. All the kids did as they were asked and rarely stepped out of line. All that was needed to keep them in check? A simple clip chart. Well, and group mentality, I suppose.
I set out to make my own home version of the clip chart, and here’s what I came up with!
I simply used some black foam board (cut in 1/2 lengthwise) and scrapbook supplies. I went for a colorful look because it seemed more fun. I made 7 different spots on my clip chart:
To implement our clip chart at home, we use these simple rules:
Everyone starts the day on the
For each good deed or exceptional behavior, Mom or Dad tells the child to move the clip up.
For each slip up in behavior, Mom or Dad tells the child to move their clip down. Each child has their own clip to move around.
Only Mom or Dad can tell a child to move a clip up or down. And, if they refuse, it’s automatically put down 2 spaces.
If the child lands on the oops, it is just a warning. No punishment. Time out space is obviously time out (amount of time based on age at our house). And, the Take Away spot means the child looses a priveledge (TV time, book before bed, playtime with friends, etc)
Every time the child lands on the Awesome block, she is rewarded with marbles in her cup. I have our marbles displayed just above the clip chart.
I found some little cups in our cupboard to use for our reward system. I just used scrapbook rub on letters to add each child’s initials to their cup. Each time the child gets her clip all the way up to awesome, he or she gets a marble in their cup. If they end the day on awesome, I throw in a few marbles. Once the little cup is full, they get a reward of their choosing. Such as, ice cream parlor, small toy, money for piggy bank, etc. Be creative here, use whatever motivates your kid.
So far, my children have been really receptive to the clip chart. We are charting our way to better behavior. Plus, I really think the visual helps kids see the patterns of their behavior during the day and keeps them motivated to change.
What kind of behavior system do you use in your home?
We spend a lot of time worrying about all the bad things or wrong things we potentially are doing as parents. I think it’s time we congratulate ourselves for all the thing we do right. Parent without regret. Here’s my list of things I’ll never regret doing as a parent. I know everyone’s list will look different, so please refrain from passing any judgement. This is supposed to be a positive experience, after all.
Parenting Moments I Will Never Regret:
Giving hugs and kisses when my children cry, whatever the reason.
Not letting my children cry “it” out. Whatever “it” may be, I felt they were trying to communicate to my through their cries. Plus, there’s nothing better than snuggling with your precious little ones in the middle of the night.
Letting my kids make as many decisions as possible.
Saying, “yes” when they come to into my room in the middle of the night and ask if they can get in bed.
Playing with them instead of doing housework.
Saying “Goodnight” and “I love you” to them every night, even when they’re not at home.
Sending them to preschool, despite the tears (and sometimes screams) of protest. The resulting amount of growth spiritually, emotionally, socially, and mentally is astounding.
Helping them find a sport that they love. Encouraging them to continue as long as they enjoy it.
Teaching them to read at an early age.
Breastfeeding them for as long as we both found it agreeable (about 20-24 months for each kid, in my case).
Teaching them to love and trust in Jesus.
Holding their hands and looking in their eyes whenever I have to say something really important.
I’m gonna catch you, you better run. I’m gonna catch you here I come! (Laurie Berkner)
My kids are growing up so fast. Sometimes I wake up in the morning and think they grew overnight. Seriously. If you’re a mom, you know.
I try to capture their little moments on camera or on video. But, most of all, I want to capture the memories.
So, I sit and watch my daughter color and ask little question and try to make her laugh.
And, I play the shape sorting game with my son; amazed that he can do it all by himself now.
We play outside, and our clothes get dirty and I don’t care. We color with markers and it stains my kid’s fingers. We eat ice cream in the middle of the day, right after nap because we can. And, it’s sticky and I wipe it off the floor and off their faces and tiny fingers.
And, I don’t mind.
I’m trying to capture these moments. Trying to catch there little smiles and bubbling laughter before it’s gone. Before my house is empty and I have nothing left but memories and occasional visits or phone calls.
It was a conscience decision, but rather a natural chain of events in raising my children with love and compassion.
My daughter is nearly 4 and she now spends most of the night sleeping by herself in her room. But, on nights when Daddy is away for business, we often fall back into the routine of me falling asleep in her room at night. I also have a 1.5 year old son, so usually that makes all 3 of us in one bed.
I actually relish this time. There’s nothing more peaceful or warming to my heart than to lay snuggled in bed with my two babies (they’ll always be my babies) listening to them breathe. Watching their eyes flicker with dreams and seeing the slow rise and fall of their chests. It’s not always the most comfortable sleep, but it’s the sweetest.
It’s glorious to wake up in the morning to smiles and hugs, too. I will cherish these moments while they last. All too soon, they’ll be gone….
And, have you found this too? My children get comfort from sleeping with each other in bed at naptime. I find it makes nap time easier and longer Yay for both of those!