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Making cents

on January 21, 2013

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Ooh I am so excited to share this new one with you today!!!
Do you ever feel like a broken record that goes something like this? ” please clean up your toys it’s time for …. Please clean up its time for …. Clean up now ! I said CLEAN UP!!!!!!” If you, do welcome to my life!
In a house full of seven , its hard enough to maintain cleanliness let alone pick up after everyone. So everyone who is able must pitch in . All I expect my children to do is pick up their toys, clean up their rooms ( with my assistance) , put their shoes and coats away when they enter the house , put their dishes in the sink when they are done eating and put their clothes in the laundry basket . I don’t think that this is asking to much . I remind them all the time . In this way the small things I ask of them help to keep so,e sort of order to the house.
Now I will fully admit that I am to the worlds best house wife but I sure try . I having been starting to put a little more chores towards the older three. Their is no reason why they can’t start some small task ( eg set the tablemif I give them the dishes from the cupboard, drying dishes. Putting their own laundry in their drawers. )
When I was a child we had ( and still do ) a big family at one point there was nine people all living under one roof. That’s a lot of dirty clothes, dishes , rooms , bathrooms and other areas to keep clean . We all had to pitch in to help in our own ways . By the time I was fourteen . I would fold laundry , set the table , clear the table , do the dishes, dust , vacuum , clean my bedroom , sometimes I would even help with dinner doing small things like snapping beans or peeling potatoes. My brothers were expected to collect garbage , bring out the recycling and garbage to the road and collect the bins once emptied. They cut the grass and weeded gardens . They helped out because that how a big family functions.
Now payback has hit . For everytime I complained about doing a chore , my kids complain three times more . So the other day after countless attempts to get them to clean up their toys I started to think of some ideas to get them to do it . We have thrown all the toys in a garbage bag saying they can’t have them back until they earn them back . Once they earned a few toys back they didn’t care and after taking the toys away so many times it stopped being effective. They just found other things to do . We’ve tried the you aren’t allowed to have dinner ,snack or lunch until its all cleaned up , that was a disaster one child cleaned it all up while the others sat looking at him do it and then once it was done hot dinner anyway. We have tried taking privileges away such as sotv for so many days. Nothing I’ve tried has worked.
So I tried the incentive approach with stickers. So many stickers equals this . Do this for so many days and then you get this . It lasted all of three days . So the other day when I felt like ripping my hair out because they just wouldn’t listen I found this idea on Pinterest.
Taking some empty jars , put their names on them , cut a hole in the top of the jar and voila a money jar. Then get and empty can and some Popsicle sticks, code them by colour . Each colour represents an amount of money , on the Popsicle stick a chore is written , they can pick a chore starting with the least amounts first and when that is done work their way up to the bigger amounts. At the end of the month they will be able to spend the money how they please or if they want they can save it to buy something bigger.
We have been doing this for a little while now and as the coins clink in the jars and they start to count the coins they talk about what they want to get with their money . They need about thirty dollars each to get what they want . I am hoping to coerce them to buy a chocolate bar or something inexpensive first to show them how it works. Once they understand a little more the value of the money they will understand how many chores they need to do to get where they want to be .
So far it’s working . In fact N try’s to bargain how many coins she gets so I allow it if I can make it amount to the same as the chore designated ( eg a chore worth a quarter becomes 5 nickels ) .
M asks if he can make some cents to add to his money jar. They are starting to want to help.
Now if I ask them to do something they are already expected to do and they do it without complaining and come for money I give them a penny . If they complain then they don’t get the money at all .
I know that some people have the mentality that when I ask you to do something you don’t . Good behaviour is expected not rewarded. And I do agree with that to some degree which is why chores they already have to do are only a penny. I also feel that kids need to learn to get something you need to earn it .
So anyways I am excite that this is working ! Hopefully it doesn’t fizzle out . I’ll post when they get to spend their money for the first time 🙂
Ttfn
E

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