Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Day 2: Behavior Points & Chores

Today was a bit more rough than yesterday, though it was still fairly tame all things considered. Overall, though, I do like the point system.
Some quick background- I have insomnia. My particular type means that I can't fall asleep easily. Once I'm asleep, I'll remain asleep until my body is ready to wake up, but it usually means catching up on sleep during the day. It usually works out that once or twice a week, I'm napping when the kids get home- they're used to this, and old enough not to need direct supervision.
Today was just such a day. I was woken up by Chris fighting with Gillian. I asked them to stop as I tried waking up, but Chris was having a stubborn moment, and as such, was not really ready to listen to me.
After hearing him nag at Gillian for another few minutes more (due to whether or not she was actively doing her chores- this is something on our list of things we want to correct, as he spends a LOT of time, energy, and our patience in worrying about what the girls are doing), I finally told him he lost a point. He settled down shortly after that as I got out of bed.
I was surprised to see all 3 kids working at their chores, though, when I woke up. Chris was done, though to be honest, not really done. I've got him finishing up right now, as he had to do a load of laundry (all 3 kids know how to do laundry now, and it is on their chores, twice a week they each are responsible for doing their own laundry).
Raegan did her dishes fairly fast, and she also had to dry & put them away (every other day of the week, it falls so that 1 kid does the washing, and 1 kid does the drying and putting away, but there are only 2 kids doing dishes, and 3 doing the putting away, so it landed with Rae doing both today). On top of that, it was also her chore to clean off the counters- throw stuff away, put stuff away, and wash them off.
It's become habit in our house to ignore one entire corner of the kitchen counter. We have an L shaped counter, and the corner area is home to the coffee pot, can opener, coffee cans, container of utensils (spatulas, slotted spoons, etc), and the dish strainer. Unfortunatly, stuff gets shoved back there, and left. Every time.
It irks me, because it makes the entire kitchen look horrible, and yet, no one ever just picks stuff up. Even my husband ALWAYS leaves the griddle sitting there (we use it maybe once every 2 weeks). So while we were making dinner, I had Raegan come back out, and start that area.
It upset her, but it IS a chore that needs to be done, and if it's done several times a week, the "stuff" won't build up back there.
So, neither Chris nor Rae finished on time tonight, and with both of them, it was because they "forgot" to do part of their chores. Both "forgotten" parts are things they always "forget" so they don't have to do them. But, I am trying to get them all to be more responsible in their jobs around the house, including doing their chores completely.
Here's hoping!
So far, Chris is at 4 points, Gillian is at 6, and Rae is at 5, though she may lose one if she doesn't finish her chore tonight. I had told her when I first noticed it that I wouldn't hold it against her if she got it done. That was an hour ago- since then, she has taken over 45 minutes to eat a bowl of spaghetti, so she can avoid doing it. It's her evasive maneuver. Avoid notice by being out of site, or claim she is still eating so she can't be asked to do it. I told her at the start of this post that she had 5 minutes, which by now, were up 3 minutes ago.


JRFrugalMom said...

I'm impressed Heather! You are having them do laundry, even Gillian...seriously, I'm impressed:)

I don't think I am organized enough to keep a system like this, but I sure hope it will work in the long run, because I know you can need the help and less frustration.

I'll be following in on how it works.

Expressions by Heather said...

Thanks J- we've had Rae and Chris doing laundry semi-regularly for about a year now, and Gilly did it every once in a while with help. Now she has been taught how to do all of the steps- from gathering & sorting, to folding and putting it away, so it's been helpful to me :)

She keeps asking to help with dishes, but she's still very clumsy- you can't break clothing if it drops. ;)