Allison has been having trouble behaving all the time. She has misbehaved for us, for the sitter, for the teacher at school and of course, NOT when she has gone to visit either set of Grandparents (Ya, right!) She is very strong willed and doesn't like to be told what to do. Curtis seems to think that she intentionally misbehaves to get a reaction from us or the teacher. He is probably right but SHHH, don't tell him! She is very independent and as her teacher, Mrs. Robinson said "She just digs her heels in and doesn't budge." Where does she get that will? ;) I keep telling myself that as long as we raise her with good values and morals, we will be thankful for her independence when she is a teen. I will pity the teen that tries to get her to take a drink or any thing else that isn't good for her. She probably will not only say "No way!" but if she keeps up this disposition, she will be giving that teen a strong case of why they shouldn't do those things too! Anyway, getting back to the 5 year old Allison. We are starting a new system to monitor her behavior on a daily basis. This is what we did:
This is our refrigerator. I have put up labels made from P-Touch for every day of the week and put a dollar bill with a magnet under each day. If Allison's behavior is good for the whole day, she will get to leave the dollar up and she gets to keep her movies (videos & DVD's). If her behavior is unacceptable, she will lose the dollar for that day and also lose a movie. Does this mean she has to be perfect? Of course not. It does mean that she will need to listen to the authority figure the first time they speak. We shouldn't have to repeat ourselves over and over and over again. She is VERY smart and knows exactly what she is doing. This system will hold her accountable and also measure her behavior. Are we paying her to be good? I don't think so. We are giving her incentive to change her behavior. Repetition is one of the most basic learning techniques. We are hoping and praying this will show her that it's so much better to just follow what she is supposed to do and not what she wants to do. At the end of the week, Allison will be able to keep what money is left. I told her that she can do one of three things with it. She can: 1. Save it to spend on our trip to Walt Disney World. 2. Put it in the bank. or 3. Spend it at the store on a toy. Of course, she didn't like any of my choices! She said that she wanted to "give it to the poor people." Isn't that sweet? She is such a good child but when her behavior is bad, it's really bad and REALLY frustrating! I'm praying this will be the thing that works. Time will tell. Oh and by the way, I can't take credit for this system. Marsha (Hi Marsha!), my best friend's sister told me about it. She said that her better half, Ron (Hi Ron!) read it somewhere and told her about it. Thanks Marsha & Ron! I'll let you know if it works!
"Raising kids is part joy and part guerilla warfare."