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puishment/reward system for 12 yr old ds

(12 Posts)
lilibet Thu 16-Jun-05 09:27:31

dh and I have started a new system for our 12 yr old ds. It is a ticks and crosses system, he accumulates ticks and crosses for good/bad behaviour and at the end of the week (which is a Thursday) the total of ticks that he gets after the crosses have been taken off depend on what happens the week after.

For example, he gets ticks for:-
Getting ready properly in a morning
Doing homework
keeping his room tidy
Good behaviour
Helping in the house

And crosses for:-
Lying
Shouting
Temper Tantrums
Stuffing all his clean clothes under his bed
Being cheeky
Bad reports from school

The reward/puishment bit goes as follows

over 35 ticks - £5 pocket money
over 30 ticks - £3 pocket money
over 25 ticks - £1 pocket money
over 20 ticks - grounded one day, with no tv/computer
over 15 ticks - grounded 3 days, with no tv/computer
over 10 ticks - grounded 4 days etc..........

minus ticks = grounded one week


We think that this is a pretty fair system - he has to get 25 ticks to not be grounded, which is pretty easy to get really - or it should be!

But it's Thursday again and he is once again almost in negative. He said from the begining (3 weeks ago) that this system would not work and I have pointed out that we are sticking with it as it is absolutley up to him if he is grounded and if he is how long he is grounded for. All he has to do really to not be grounded is get ready, do his homework, keep his room tidy and then it follows that he has behaved, so that is 4 ticks a day.

He has been playing in a football league for the last season and has done really well, he has been the leading goal scorerer. It is the presentation night on Saturday, so last night, when he was still in positive, I was bending over backwards to think of ways that meant that he wasn't grounded and could go. Told him that I would give him 5 jobs and he could get a tick for each. First job - hoover your room (it's 8ft square so hardly a taxing job). He comes down, says he has done it. Lying. challenged him about this - he threw the hoover across the room and had a serious tantrum. So once again, we had a day where the crosses out numbered the ticks.

I really want to take him on Saturday night, but don't feel that I can as I am sticking with this system.

so - thanks for reading this far! and do you think this is a good system? Would you bend the rules and take him out? Or does that show him that he is right and the system is nver going to work?

jampots Thu 16-Jun-05 09:33:38

i think its a good system and worth sticking to. Persevere and it will pay off. However, this is an exceptional circumstance and I would let him go because he's done so well at his football BUT I would start next week's off in minus already!

Just out of interest through, do you allocate ticks/crosses on a "per offence/good deed" basis. Only in my mind the vaccuum tantrum would warrant far more ticks than stuffing his clothes under the bed for instance. Also do you cross through ticks so if say by Monday night he got 4 ticks then he did something wrong would he still have 4 ticks and a cross or 3 ticks and a cross?

sallystrawberry Thu 16-Jun-05 09:37:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lyla Thu 16-Jun-05 10:05:20

i sympathise, i have 10 year old DS and 12 year old DD. your system sounds good, ive been thinking of doing some sort of reward chart for ages. I think i would personally let him go to the football though or am i too soft??

good luck

lilibet Thu 16-Jun-05 10:15:20

Jampots, at the end of the week I would add up the ticks then add up the crosses and deduct one from the other, so 25 ticks and 10 crosses = 15 ticks. So everytime he does something bad it wipes off something good he has done.

MarsLady Thu 16-Jun-05 10:19:07

lilibet.... I've been thinking about this for the last few minutes and you may disagree but I think that having a cross take away a tick (iyswim) is not a good thing. The ticks represent something that he has done well/right etc. I think that he should be able to keep those ticks. When he does something wrong, or doesn't do it at all then he should get the crosses but the "punishment" should be something not related to the ticks. It just seems as though for him there may be no point in doing the good stuff cos as soon as he does something wrong it is as though the good were forgotten.

I hope that makes sense, cos it does in my head, just sounds garbled out loud. Will give it more thought!

bumptobabies Thu 16-Jun-05 10:36:51

i feel for you, my dd is nearly 11 and we have all the same issues.

i tried the reward systems for months and came to the conclusion they didnt really work.

when dd is doing something we want ie "you were intentional this morning well done,would you like to invite a friend over" etc we praise and reward the behaviour we want and speak to her about choices when she displays the behaviour we dont want and how she could have done it different.

i think its really tricky and will get worse. its hard growing up with all those chemical imbalances and feelings running rife,i feel its important that they feel support through this time,that we remember often they dont mean to be a pain and that they are trying to discover who they are.
of course we all parent differently so you must do what works for you.

PollyLogos Thu 16-Jun-05 10:43:42

Lilibet, I have 3 teenagers so do know where you are coming from. But (there's always a but isn't there?)

First I think he should go to the football presentation. I think stopping him from going will be a huge blow to his self esteem, and to how his peers and even perhaps how his coach, sees him. Of course I don't know all the history here and recognise that there may be background stuff i don't know about.

Secondly I agree with what marslady says.

Thirdly it seems quite difficult to me for him to earn those points. As I understand he has to do all 5 'duties' for 5 days without doing anything negative to get one pound of pocket money. Seems quite difficult to me.

Its a very difficult age and I feel really strongly that its important to pick your battles with care and let some of the lesser stuff go by the wayside. As I said before though I don't know all the story behind this. Good luck ! Teens can be stressful.

saffy202 Thu 16-Jun-05 11:27:21

I can relate having ds1 aged 11. It is ds1's footie presentation on Saturday also and having been to many before, at ours the top scorer actually gets a cup of his own with his name on.

I think if the same happens at your presentation your ds would feel very disappointed and maybe resentful to you, if he missed his chance of 'glory'

I'm sure you could come up with another form of punishment for this week only if you feel the need to. Or even ground him up until the presentation but tell him this is the only exception you are making.

I say take him and your camera and make sure he knows how proud you are of him!

fluppy Thu 16-Jun-05 21:26:02

I like your thinking about setting up some sort of scheme for good behaviour, lilibet, and wondered if a psychologist's take would be any help? The usual approach to behaviour charts is to focus on the positive behaviours and reward these, so that good behaviour becomes reinforced. It is fundamental to the success of this approach that you make sure he can achieve some success: you should try to set some targets that you know he can reach so he has the positive experience of being rewarded.

I would be inclined to go for a straightforward reward chart, where the focus of your attention in his achievements, and he can't 'undo' his good behaviour by misbehaving at some other time. And you're more likely to be successful if you find a way to involve him in setting up the system. To echo some others here, I would also pick my battles very carefully: homework is simply non-negotiable, but could you live with a messy room so long as his desk is clear?..

Best of luck to you! Our eldest is still the most reluctant homework do-er, and he's just turned 14!

bbmad Thu 16-Jun-05 22:23:07

I agree the positive and negative need to be completely separate. A certain number of crosses means grounding for so long and ticks = pocket money. There may be some weeks where he earns money and is also grounded, which may seem wierd, but I think its important he is rewarded for good behaviour.

FWIW I also think he should be allowed to go to his presentation evening. I tend to use "grounding" to mean not going out with mates. That way if we need to go out as a family we don't have to back down.

Hope this makes sense!

Lara2 Thu 16-Jun-05 23:52:13

i definately agree with what has been said - reward good behaviour, really focus on that, and don't take away rewards he has already earned. That's a fundamental behaviour management point. There should be sanctions for negative behaviour, but like the others said - pick your battles carefully - what REALLY matters to you? What do you want as the end product?

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