Friday, February 4, 2011


Thank you all for the advice yesterday.  I was a little scared last night because Jaden didn't get a nap at the sitter's.  We are gradually shortening her naps to get her used to no napping once preschool starts.  Annie said she would just go with how Jaden was feeling/acting and see if she needed a nap at all.  Well, her BFF, Alyssa Ooh didn't need a nap so Jaden got to skip hers too.  Annie said that they just kind of looked at each other and said, "Did we stay up all night?"  Jaden has always been a good napper.  She will sometimes sleep for two-three hours!  I think that was keeping her awake at night because she would sometimes lay in bed reading until after 11:00!  (I know, duh.)  Last night, she was asleep before 9 p.m.  This morning when I went in to wake her up, she was happy!  We had a great morning and she got a sticker on her chart :o)  Only three more stickers and she gets the much anticipated Jessie Doll!
I think that the problem I'm having with Jaden's reward chart is that the reward is too far out of reach.  This is the chart we are currently working on:
She needs 42 stickers before she gets her reward.  I think that with the next chart (with different activities), I will give her mini rewards for either filling up an entire row or sticking all activities in one day.  That way, she will feel like there is more of an incentive to behave.

To address some of the comments from yesterday, Abbey suggested "'rewarding good behavior immediately'...aka, bribery."  We used to do that and when she was younger, it worked great.  Then, she got to the point where she felt like she needed to get a reward for any and everything she did.  Eventually, a "good job!" wasn't enough.  This is why we started the reward chart in the first place.  One of her friends went to the sitter's with a Jessie Doll.  Jaden came home and said she wanted one.  When I told her we weren't going to get one that night, she threw a fit.  That incident sort of opened my eyes to the fact that we may spoil her just a little, giving in to things she desires.  We like to reward her because she is such a good kid.  I guess I didn't realize she was getting so many rewards.  Abbey also suggested the book, Parenting With Love & Logic.  I think this sounds like a helpful resource and am definitely going to check it out!  Thanks, Abbey!

Jill of All Trades suggested being nonchalant when Jaden has her fits and to just let her be angry.  I agree to a certain extent.  She can feel whatever she wants to feel.  BUT, she also needs to learn that it is not appropriate to yell at her dad and me.  She also must learn that it is rude to talk back to her parents.  She also must learn that she can't always get everything she wants.  Jaden is a very emotional little girl.  She wears her heart on her sleeve and gets her feelings hurt very easily.  Just the other night, she started crying because she thought I looked angry.  I tried to reassure her that I was not angry at all, but once a thought is in her head, she can't get it out.  If I would have just let her cry it out, she would have went to bed that night thinking her mom was mad at her when honestly, I wasn't mad at all.  I understand that most times she just defies us to get a reaction and those tantrums, we try to ignore.  We do not give in to her.

SpontaneousMom had an excellent idea that we are going to put into action in our house.  She said, "We have an "area" for bad moods. For example if you want to be in a bad mood fine- but not in the kitchen- because in the kitchen everyone is happy. So if one of the kids wants to be mad- then they can go to that in their room- BUT- while they are thinking about why they are mad- or what's bothering them. There is no playing, no TV, video games, etc.. They can journal- or call us in the room to talk. But once they come back to the kitchen- they have to come back with a different attitude- if they want to talk about it we will- but really when they come back in we pretend nothing happened and move on with our day."  I think this is an excellent idea!  Jaden reasons very well and sometimes just needs her own space to cool down.  Perfect, thanks!

I just want to reiterate that Jaden is a good kid.  I was talking to her babysitter about this issue last night and she said she has never had a problem with Jaden and tantrums.  She told me that Jaden is always so nice and so polite.  Annie said that if another kid is having a bad day, Jaden is always the first to step in and try to help.  I guess there is a little girl there that whines constantly.  Annie said that everything this little girls says comes out in a whine.  Annie said that Jaden will go up to this little girl and say, "Listen to me talk.  Can you talk like that?"  I found that to be kind of funny, actually :o)  I feel lucky to have a kid as good as Jaden.  As much as I hate the occasional tantrum, I can honestly say that I'm glad they only happen at home. 

Thanks again for all of the advice!  Have a great weekend :o)


coles1mom said...

Reward charts work very well for some children and not so well for others. Our 7yr old has always responded well to them. He likes to put the stickers on and see the columns fill up. The charts of course have changed over the years depending on what his days were like and what behavior/issue we were dealing with. One thing I always try to include are BUILT IN SUCCESSES. That way there is zero chance of them having a day with no stickers to put on their chart. I usually had a morning, afternoon, and evening chart (just because it helped him to see his progress through the day) with at least one no fail sticker for each. His no fail behavior was usually something like 'Be helpful', 'Be polite', or 'Have some fun' It sounds like setting the table is your little ones forte. We usually did a weekly reward so the end wasn't too far away for him to appreciate. I guess the younger the child the closer the reward should be, maybe daily for very small children. Ours were often but not always a small toy that he had his eye on(probably not the best idea but oh well) It was sometimes him getting to choose a takeout dinner(invariable it was Chinese)
Congratulations on having a mostly good kid :-) If they can behave while away from home you're ahead of the game and doing better than many. We all struggle with at-home behavior occasionally, hopefully this stage will pass quickly.

Jenny said...

You definitely do have good kids! Jaden is so much like you....tender-hearted, emotional, and cares so much about other's feelings.
Keep doing what you are doing, and you will get through the small bumps in the road.
I do agree with other response, keep the "easy rewards" on the chart....she is so proud of how she can help you!!!
and as always, my famous last words to you..."This too shall pass!"
love ya, mom

AGrowingNest said...

My little girl is only 3 months old, but I've enjoyed reading all the parenting advice. I know the day is coming all too soon when I'll need it!

SpontaneousMom said...

OH yay! glad I could help :)