MOMI TIPS| the rewards chart

Jan 6, 2017 | Life, Only Berlin

I came across this writing last night.  I wrote this two years ago and thought of sharing it with you.  It helped me in dealing with my kids about lost crayons, unreadable handwriting, and dirty school bag.  This year, we’ve graduated from this rewards chart system.  My boys have become appreciative of their baon and take care of their school supplies.  I guess the tasks from this activity became a habit thus with or without a reward, they do it voluntarily and happily.   

Last school year was a period of punitive justice in our household.  I’ve scolded the boys over lost pencil and leftovers.   These made my kids feel hurt and sad.  They might have even doubted my love for them.

Today though, I will try to be more patient.  Instead of punishment, I will reward my boys for every good deed done.   Using positive discipline might encourage them to realize their wrongdoings and eventually change these undesirable actions.  This way, they will feel not only my love but their value as well.

After brainstorming with the boys, we came us with our COUNT YOUR STARS rewards chart.  The kids will receive a gift for every completed task.  They also discussed within themselves the prize they will receive to give them further the motivation to do the assigned work.

the tasks (5 categories):

1.  legible handwriting

2. no creases and fold on notebooks and books

3. no leftover

4. homework done

5.  clean bag and no lost-and-found

the reward:

1.  earned five stars in one category in a week  = P20.00

2.  completed all five categories in a week = P100.00

3.  got perfect stars in one category for two consecutive weeks = cellphone load

4.  60 stars (all five categories) for two weeks = P300.00 cellphone load

5. completed all stars for one category in a month = Android paid game

6.  all five categories with complete stars in a month = five Android paid games

To give their brain a good work out, I even urged the boys to create their charts.

Firstborn's rewards chart artwork

Firstborn’s rewards chart artwork

The boys’ colorful art works are displayed in our freedom wall.  That way, they get a status check on each other’s progress.

I assume teachers give sticker rewards to their students to 1) acknowledge the pupils’ excellent class standing, 2) further encourage the kids to do good in school, and 3) tell the parents that their children just did something great in class.

Though I appreciate my boys’ teachers giving out these star stickers or stamps, I told myself not to use the same system at home.  Why.  Because 1) I do not want the boys to get used to receiving rewards for every good deed, 2) I am somehow afraid not to keep my promise and disappoint my kids, and 3)  I am quite apprehensive of its effect on my boys’ behavior. They might get used to this kind of reward system that in everything they do, they will wait for something in exchange.  Or what if they tend to get bored with the idea that one day, they will just don’t care.

Sometimes too, I equate reward system to slowly bribing my boys to do what I expect them to.   Good thing though that I have read in one literature that there is a difference between a reward and a bribe.    The book says a reward is given after the behavior, while a bribe is given before.  It even included a good example:  a parent rewards the child by saying, “you did well. Here’s a token.” A bribe, on the contrary,  will be a parent who says, “here’s a token, now please do this.”  Also, most of us are motivated by rewards.  A month’s work means paycheck on the 15th and 30th.  Same idea with rewarding the kids of their hard work.

My second son's rewards chart

My second son’s rewards chart

The boys got a taste of how our Star Chart works.   They’ve just received their first reward. Firstborn completed three categories in a week thus got P60.00.  Second son was very consistent with his legible writing and clean bag hence received P40.00.  Our bunso, on the other hand, faltered and completed the legible writing category only, and therefore got P20.00.

I just hope that with the special token they got, they will be motivated to do even more. This mother is also hoping that through this reward gimmick, her boys will discover within themselves that they can do certain things on their own and they can fine tune those needing some extra attention. This reward chart will not be forever.  They say that it takes 21 days to form a new habit.  So by a month or so, I am optimistic that they will be comfortable doing specific tasks even without a reward.

Here’s to hoping for a good cause and investment.

7 Comments

  1. ROBERT LEE | Amazing Life Daily

    I think that what you did was a fantastic idea. And I think other parents could do the same, or do a variety of it. When my kids were small, I remember once doing a chart too. But it was nothing like yours. Mine was a straight line. The kids start at the middle every day. Both opposite ends are either the good boy or bad boy. There were no rewards or prizes. It was just something to do. So when they make mistakes, they take a step towards the bad boy end. When they do good, they take a step going to the good boy side. But I rigged them. I keep finding ways to make sure they do not end up in the negative at the end of the day. Always end with a positive… LOL.

    Reply
  2. Michi

    I did this January last year so I don’t have to repeat myself over and over again. My son will just check the chore chart and he will do his task. The reward is the number of hours of playing iPad every weekend. But I think the chart only lasted for two months, since alam na niya gagawin niya, naging habit na rin so tipid na ko sa pagprint and stickers. 🙂

    Reply
    • momiberlin

      Hurray for the responsible boy. It is nice to know that he was able to make it a habit. Oftentimes, aside from their parents’ guidance, it is the children’s good character building that makes a task successful.

      Reply
  3. Style With Tina

    This is incredibly creative. I love how they created their own charts and were able to follow up with certain tasks. You also created a great rewards system – I want an Andriod game! 😉

    What do you think of planning a short trip (choice of movie) as a reward for good deeds?

    Reply
    • momiberlin

      Thanks. Yup, we changed the rewards in the middle of that year and some indicated they wanted movie date and new psp games.

      Reply
  4. Nilyn Matugas

    Ang galing! I’m thinking of doing this with Nate also when he gets older. Perhaps when he starts going to school. Maganda to para ma encourage sila. And like what Michi said, pag naging habit na, they won’t even notice their already doing their task, it becomes habitual na.

    Reply
    • momiberlin

      Indeed. It only takes 21 days to make things a habit. Go go for nate

      Reply

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