Negotiating With Children - 05/01/14

  I was perusing the morning headlines and came across this new study (isn't there always a new study?)
  Well, this one distinguishes the subtle nuance between phrases that will get your children to clean up their mess.  Someone actually took the time, energy and money to study whether we should say to our younger kids... "Some children are helpers,"  or "Some children choose to help."  The study found the former, not the latter, was 29% more effective at getting preschoolers to clean up.
    I don't need some study to tell me which word to use when.  Little Johnny... you made the mess, we had fun making it, now it's time to clean it up.  Plain and simple.  That's just the way the world works.  I think negotiating with children, beginning at a young age... is dangerous.  There are expectations, responsibilities, a natural order to life that we need to implant into our children starting early. It's non negotiable.
    We started having our kids sort the silverware from the dishwasher at age
4 1/2.  I praised them profusely for a job well done and they found great satisfaction in contributing to our home.  It enhanced their self esteem to feel so useful in our family dynamic.  Since then, we've added more age appropriate responsibilities. (I call them responsibilities, not chores.)  Currently, they fold towels, empty the dishwasher, feed the dogs, water the garden, and clean up their messes.  They earn $2 a week.  
    We started early outlining the expectations.  Everyone works and contributes in our home. There's no free ride.  I never said, "Some children are helpers" and I certainly never said "Some children choose to help."  It's not a choice.  Never has been. Never will be.  Parents who do that are raising mediocrity and doing their kids a disservice.  The real world doesn't give you a choice about being responsible or helping or contributing or earning your own way.  The real world requires this. 
    At our house, we live in the real world.  I'm not negotiating with my kids. I'm raising good citizens.  Here's that silly study if you care to read:

http://www.today.com/moms/learn-secret-word-will-get-your-preschooler-help-clean-2D79599714?__source=xfinity|hero&par=xfinity

 

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Last Update on October 24, 2014 09:09 GMT

COIN TOSS-MAYOR

LIMA, Peru (AP) -- Usually, one flips a coin to determine things like who gets the ball first in a football game or who gets first dibs at the last slice of pie or something. But to settle an election? That's what happened in a small town high in the Peruvian Andes. Two candidates tied at the ballot box -- with each getting 236 votes in the municipal election. Peru's electoral law allows tie races to be decided by a coin toss. So the coin was tossed. And the winner -- Wilber Medina. His rival says he's cool with the results. It isn't known whether heads or tails carried the day -- and the election.

PUMPKINS-PIGS

SOMERSWORTH, N.H. (AP) -- It started as a potential case of pilfered pumpkins. But it turned out to be a windfall for a group of pigs. Foster's Daily Democrat in Somersworth, New Hampshire reports hundreds of pumpkins were reported stolen earlier week. The gourds had been set aside behind a school to be sold this weekend at a craft fair. The investigation didn't get far. Turns out a farmer spotted the pumpkins and asked a school worker if he could take them to feed his pigs. The school employee didn't know the pumpkins were being saved -- and the farmer took them. Police say the only ones that turned out happy in the whole episode -- are the hogs.

FIREWORKS-FUNERAL

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) -- When the fireworks burst in the air tomorrow night over Springfield, Missouri -- it won't be the Fourth of July -- but the last of James Carver. A Missouri funeral director will be bidding farewell to his dad -- by having his cremated remains mixed with fireworks -- and launched into the sky. Carver's father is the first to try the program by Greenlawn Funeral Homes. His son Jim is the funeral director -- and says the eight-minute fireworks display will be followed by a cookout and memorial celebration.

 
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