I know there are tons of parenting blogs, websites, books, magazines and everything in between, but I’m going to keep it real. Being a parent is the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but also the most rewarding. I’m not perfect, not even close! I’ve read those parenting books, blogs, etc and have taken pieces of what I’ve learned and try my best to see what works with each kid, because they are not all created equal after all.
I’ve also had great advice from my sister Kristin who will contributing her two cents on here. It takes a village as they say! I can’t wait for her to share her expertise with you all.
Let’s start by figuring out what’s important to you as parents. Make a list of house rules you would like your children to follow and go over these rules and expectations with them. Keep it short and sweet. Pick your top 5 most important rules, for example, No yelling, No hitting, No naughty language etc. This will give you and your kids an obtainable goal.
For children ages 1 to about 6, give the child a warning. Let them know what rule they broke and what their consequence will be if they break the rule again. For these ages time out works great. Select a spot in your home where you can keep an eye on your child so they’re not playing around while in punishment. The child needs to be in time out for one minute per their age (if you have a three year old, they will spend three minutes in time out). The younger you start discipline, the easier it will be on you. I promise!
For older kids, I have found that taking their most prized possessions away is most effective. Fidget spinners, legos, cell phones, tablets, whatever they love the most needs to go when they break one of your rules.
Rewards work well too. We have sticker charts for our 11, 7, 6 and 3 year-olds. The younger kids earn a sticker for good behavior, following the rules, doing chores, which we’ll get into later. When they earn 10 stickers they get to select a prize from our treasure box. Now, you don’t have to go crazy with treasure box items. Sticker packs, key chains, crayons, markers, small inexpensive prizes that can be found at the dollar store or the dollar spot in Target or clearance isle at Wal-Mart.
Our oldest needs to earn 20 stickers to earn her treasure box items. We try to pick items that each individual kid will enjoy. Sometimes we get two or three of the same things so our boys don’t pitch fits over prizes.
You will have to find what works for your family. There are days we have multiple kids in time out! But most days they stay out of trouble!
I’ve included some links below with examples for sticker charts and house rules. https://www.pinterest.com/explore/house-rules-chart/?lp=true