"We can do no great things, only small things with great love." - Mother Teresa

Monday, November 8, 2010

Simple, but oh so effective

Which, of course, is my favorite.

This came about because I felt like I was disciplining kids all the time. ALL the time. I wanted to find a way to focus on and reward their good behavior, instead of always punishing for bad. So, after combining some good ideas of various family members, I came up with the "Good Behavior Chart". It is a simple idea. Each child has a clothes pin with their name on it. Any time they do something "good", they move up one spot on the chart. For the littler ones, anything good counts - saying "thank you", putting dishes in the sink, eating their dinner without fussing, anything! For the big ones, they have to do those things without being asked. It is a 1:1 ratio - one good behavior - one spot up. When they are bad, they move down a spot. Since this is a good behavior chart, I try not to move them down much.
When they get to the top of the chart, they get a Good Behavior Buck. These bucks can be redeemed at the Good Behavior store.
The Good Behavior store consists of a bin full of dollar store items, each priced for various Good Behavior Buck amounts. The most prized items have the highest prices (even though they only cost me a buck!)

Although this is a remarkably simple system, it works wonders. We have been using it for almost two months now, and it still works! The kids are excited to see their progress up the chart, we are focusing much more on their positive behavior, and they are learning the value of saving. I don't know that Hyrum has ever gotten anything more than a sucker (the $1 item), but Brigham and Paul are remarkably good little savers!

As well as being very useful, it was incredibly easy to construct. I cut 14 5.5x1.25" strips of construction paper, lined them up on a piece of poster board, and cut the board out around the size the strips made. I covered the thing in contact paper, wrote the kids' names on some clothes pins, and hung it on the wall. Viola! The Good Behavior Bucks (which I made in Word) are just kept pinned on the top of the chart behind the back. When they earn bucks they want to save, those get thumb-tacked to their spots on our cork board. I love it, it it really seems to be making a difference in their behavior!


Anita said...

Clever! I'm glad it's working for you. How is the Thanksgiving tree going?

Kathy said...

Such a good idea. I love it!