I stumbled upon this amazing story that a mom shared on her Facebook page. It was very relatable and inspiring. I reached out to her to share her story. I hope you enjoy this and learn from it too. Happy reading.
I value my sanity. No, I have more than enough to spare to some of you parents who feel like pulling out your hair.
I want to tell you a little something I discovered during the lockdown.
The first few weeks of the lockdown was quite overwhelming for me. I had to deal with so many things all at once. Managing my kids was one thing that wasn’t easy at all. Can you believe all their books were left in school? So I was stuck on how to figure out ways to engage them without me fully being involved all the time.
I had been working remotely well before the lockdown, but this time, it felt more like people coming into your office and not wanting to leave. At some point, I would go outside with my laptop to stay in the car with my husband. So we can both work together. I went to bed late and was very exhausted daily. I mediated a lot of issues. Sometimes, silly issues like one child screaming down the house, and you find out that the reason for the cry was because the other sibling was staring at her, told him to stop, but he wouldn’t. Then the accused would say, but she stared first. How do you judge that? 😀😀
I had to remind them over and over and over again to do chores and clean up after every mess.
Then I thought about an idea that gave me a big relief. I figured I could use a scorecard or cardboard, just about anything to start rewarding them for good behaviour. We had an agreement about this new development 😀.
Going forward; They were very excited to put in efforts without any reminders.
Personal Devotion without a reminder – 1 point
Bed making in the morning- 1 point
Sitting still throughout family devotion-1 point
Mopping and drying the bathroom floor after bathing-1 point
Dishwashing morning /noon- 1 point
Tidying up toys 1 point
Other things that could get them additional points:
Showing Initiative around the house, that includes them doing things without waiting to be told.
Showing of compassion to sibling (Their dad and I have been deliberate with helping them grow up with a strong bond and helping one another out as siblings )- 2 points
I also outlined the things that can get points deducted :
Fighting- minus 2 marks
Not cleaning or tidying up after making a mess.- minus 2 marks
Failure to do homework – minus 2 marks
We calculate the points daily and then declare the winner at the end of the week.
The winner gets a gift. It doesn’t cost much to put a smile on children’s faces honestly. Usually not a big gift but something they like. You will be amazed at how much their face lit up for just getting a reward as little as $1
Sometimes we have 2 winners if they end up getting the same points.
This strategy was magical. I could not believe how well behaved my kids became consistently.
When I go into my bedroom, I see my bed was made by the kids because somebody needs an extra point.
The kids struggle to do the dishes when I and my husband finish eating. Everyone wants to earn a point.
I heard that kids can easily adapt to new habits after some time. So I stopped giving rewards for a while, just to see if there would be any changes. I am so excited to see that without rewards, they still maintained the new habit and continued to follow the scheduled chores for the day.
One of them came to me a few minutes ago saying “Mum do you need my help with anything?” Wonderful!
My screaming achieved nothing in a long while, I achieved more effectively by focusing on rewards for their good behaviour.
I had to share because, even if it’s irrelevant today, you may need it someday, very soon😀.
The Picture below is a gift I bought 2 weeks ago for the winner.
Make sure it is age-appropriate. The rewards could be as simple as allowing more time for them to do what they enjoy doing. It doesn’t have to be edibles.
Written by Yimika Okeowo
Mrs. Yimika Okeowo is a mother of 3 amazing kids, a wife, an MBA and a BSc Economics graduate from the University of South Wales UK. A teen and youth counsellor that loves to share her lessons and experiences in a journey to effective parenting.
She has had the opportunity of speaking at children camps, youth conferences, and also mentored many teenagers both in religious and non-religious spheres.
Below are the amazon links to the items used to create an exciting scorecard experience for the kids.
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