The Terrible Three’s seem to be setting in here. Darn! I was so hoping my boys would be some of the rare 3 year olds that are actually just fine. Instead, in the last month we’ve seen a huge increase in not listening, tantrums, button pushing and fighting. I will say this though – their behavior still isn’t that bad. I mean, I have seen (and heard of) worse from 3 year olds, but the boys have been insanely well behaved (especially in public) in the last 8-10 months that it’s been exceptionally hard for me to get used to telling them something 15 times in a row in Target only to have the sound of my voice bouncing off whatever object it is they’re touching.
A big sign that the frustration is getting to me? Last night I had several dreams in which I was frustrated with the boys for not listening to me. I even woke Nick up with my ranting in my sleep. He said I was telling Chase to stop touching the towel. I don’t remember that dream, but I do remember one that prompted me to throw the sheet off me and start to get out of bed before I realized I was dreaming. The offense in the dream? The boys had pulled the floor vent cover up and were dropping toys down the vent (something that happened here yesterday).Â Can you tell I’m one frustrated woman?
After some talking, Nick and I agreed the boys are clever enough now to “get” a star chart. I was on the hunt for poster board this week when I discovered something much more fun (and in the long run, cost effective) at Target. Behold, the magnetic star charts!
In case you can’t read all of the ways they can earn stars, here they are:
Getting dressed when asked, eating meals when asked, picking up toys and books, being good and listening in pubic, no time outs during the day, staying dry during the day (Tyler is the only one with this item – he’s had a problem lately with waiting too long to use the potty and as a result his underwear is a little wet and needs to be changed) and staying in bed at night (we classify this as being able to fall asleep in their own room, with their door open).
Basically, it’s all the items that become “issues” with them several times a week. In the morning, there’s often one who doesn’t want to get dressed and things spiral out of control. There have been times (many) we’ve struggled to get one of the boys to stop playing or tantruming and get up to the table to eat (we’ve actually made them skip a meal if it’s really bad). Picking up their toys and books at night can be a struggle several times a week. Taking them in public has been increasingly frustrating (see my Target comment at the beginning of the post) and we all know what an issue bed time has been. It’s pretty often that each child serves at least one time out a day, so I figure not having any time outs all day to earn a star is do-able.
The rewards are simple: 6 stars earns them a piece of candy, 15 stars will earn them a happy hour drink at Sonic and 30 stars will earn them a small toy or book. We figure for now they’ll probably only earn 3 or 4 stars a day at most. I’d love it if they’d surprise me though!
The big question is, will this work? Time will tell and I’ll definitely keep you updated!
Giveaway post coming right up!