Last week my husband and I decided that something had to change about our morning routine. We felt like we were constantly nagging the kids to get their clothes, eat their breakfast, do their chores, etc. We were tired of punishing them and wanted to motivate them in a positive way. Earlier that week, I had read an article about a Mom who used "Dad Dollars" to motivate her children to do all the steps in their morning routine on time. So we laid in bed and brainstormed what to do. We decided to let the natural consequences be the teachers rather than us being the naggers. The next morning, we talked to the kids and they were totally excited about earning "Dad Dollars." They especially thought it was hilarious that their Daddy's picture was on the dollar bill. Here's our plan: Every morning each kid will get a clipboard with a checklist (can you tell I love checklists?) of tasks to complete. If they complete all the tasks on their list by 7:55, they can go pick up 3 "Dad Dollars" that will be waiting for them on the countertop. However, those Dad Dollars will disappear every morning at 7:55 (without verbal warning). With their Dad Dollars, they can earn fun rewards redeemable at the "Mommy Mart" including extra Wii time, free chore passes, stay up 30 mins. late passes, ice cream for the family, etc.
They also have other natural consequences to motivate them as well including having to do double chores after school if they don't finish them in the morning, taking their clothes in a bag if they are not dressed in time AND paying the "Dad Taxi" to take them to school if they miss the "Mommy Bus" (I know, we're so cheesy sometimes) that leaves at 7:55 everyday no matter what. This had already made for less stressful mornings for us. Yay for creative solutions!
P.S. To make your own free Daddy Dollars, go to www.festisite.com/money