When my kids first started bringing the books home, I wasn’t crazy about the “wimpy kid”. He seemed a bit, well, jilted and rude. But the wimpy kid stayed around, the books came home from the library and the movie appeared several times at different events. And then, something magical happened. One day I was given “Mom Bucks” – pieces of paper, cut haphazardly, with the word MOM written on them. And I was told that in the movie “Diary of a Wimpy Kid”, the kids could collect these and were paid $1 for each one. Never one to miss an opportunity, my mind began to whirl – just what could we do with these Mom bucks in our house?
– doing a good deed – being kind to others – being helpful around the house – and just about anything positive that could be recognized.
The kids took to it like pygmy goats at a birthday party (we did that once, it was a fantastic hit!). Cash in 10 Mom bucks and you receive one dollar. All of a sudden I had very helpful kids – they helped with dishes, they put the clothes away, tidied up, collected chicken eggs, helped one another, etc., etc., etc. And it didn’t stop there. Their friends could earn Mom bucks when they come over. For every ten earned, they get a sleep over. We have had, well, a few sleep overs. And the house always looks almost as tidy when they leave as it did when they showed up.
It has been almost a year since I have discovered Mom Bucks. We have graduated to a more sophisticated version, a small version of the dollar bill with my picture in the middle. The kids are still very helpful, although their interest has highs and lows, but overall, it continues to be a fun and effective reward system. A little discovery that continues to amaze me. Not that surprising when you realize that if you turn the word MOM upside down and you get WOW! 🙂
aka Dr Debt