Getting Kids to Behave
A few months ago, my 4 kids stayed with my sister for a week while my hubby and I had a much needed getaway. During their stay, my sister came up with “the jelly bean trick” to motivate my kids to be on their best behavior. When she told me about it I was a little leery. My kids always behave much better for others than when they are home in their comfort zone. I figured it only worked because they were at her house and showing her their ‘best selves.’ When they got home, I decided to give it a shot and see if it would work in their PERMANENT home. I was pleasantly surprised! If you’re having a hard time getting kids to behave you might want to give this a shot!
Here is how it works. Every time my kids were behaving well or going the extra mile they would get rewarded with a jelly bean. They would then save those jelly beans in a jar. On “Friday Fun-night” they would get to use those jelly beans to buy prizes from the awesome prize box! (There is more to it…just hang on)
The trick is…if they are asked to do something and they say,
“Will I get a jelly bean if I do it?” then the answer is always
Sometimes they might get more than one if they have gone above and beyond. Sometimes they won’t get any. The key is for them to learn to behave regardless of whether they get a reward or not. Now, you might be thinking,
“What keeps them from just eating all their jelly beans?”
Thats what I thought since my kids have no impulse control when it comes to sweets. But the jelly beans are like their allowance for the week. If they eat them, they will have nothing to buy prizes with on Friday, and my kids REALLY look forward to Fridays! They key is to keep jelly beans close by or in your pocket so that you will be able to immediately hand them over when you notice good behavior. The prize bucket also needs to ROCK! I am always adding new things that I find for cheap to change things up and keep them excited. They can also eat their jelly beans after they buy their prizes(YAY!)
If you really don’t want to use jelly beans it’s ok! We have also tried this same method using mini pom poms (or warm fuzzies as we like to call them) My kids loved them just as much and it helped to change things up a bit.
The point is not WHAT you use in that jar as much as HOW you reward them. Be consistent with passing out the warm fuzzies or beans (or whatever!) and consistently keep the prize box excited and you will have success, I promise! My oldest is 11 and this works well for her too!
What crazy methods have YOU come up with for getting kids to behave? Please share!