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Parenting > Reward systems for kids




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message 61: by ARTPOP (new)

ARTPOP  | 152 comments I haven't read any of the posts, but I just want to say, I've always loved getting sweets and a reward. Stars and stickers have never motivated me. When I did something well, and I got this nice strawberry lolly, I was pretty motivated. Or maybe, I was just hyper! :)


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments ♥ Rachel♥ wrote: "Aleph wrote: "i personally think that stickers dont count as presents."

Stickers are definitely presents...my piano teacher gives me stickers (I'm 15...'-_-) if I get a superior ranking in a compe..."


Same. I mean, I was congratulated if I did something good, and even treated if that something happened to be GREAT. But there was no 'system' that claimed my parents HAD to treat me. They just did.


message 59: by Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* (last edited Feb 16, 2012 12:12PM) (new)

Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* | 440 comments Zack wrote: "Sorry LADIES.
Just a joke.
:P"


Ha. Haha. You know, it's real funny how you criticized Rachel for talking about depression/suicide in this group (in a topic where it was completely relevant), and then you go and make jokes about kissing people's asses ... for no reason whatsoever.


message 58: by ♥ Rachel♥, Hey, whoa, I'm a mod! (new)

♥ Rachel♥ sHE beLIEveD (I_got_a_jar_of_dirt) | 767 comments Mod
Aleph wrote: "i personally think that stickers dont count as presents."

Stickers are definitely presents...my piano teacher gives me stickers (I'm 15...'-_-) if I get a superior ranking in a competition and they're the best things ever xD

Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* wrote: "Wow, I haven't checked this group in ages. I stink. But anyway...

No, I personally don't agree with reward systems. I think kids should learn to do good things just for the sake of being good––not..."


It's the way I was raised too, with random treats like Nina suggested. Then again...my parents completely disagree with my view of morality, so I'm not sure how well that worked >.<


message 57: by Zack (last edited Feb 13, 2012 01:17PM) (new)

Zack (ZackCantellbury) | 11 comments Sorry LADIES.
Just a joke.
:P


message 56: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
*Awkward*
:/
Zack- Not REALLY 'lol'ing myself right now. Not very funny.


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments Yeah, that's a little inappropriate...


Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* | 440 comments Um ... please don't.


message 53: by Zack (last edited Feb 13, 2012 05:33AM) (new)

Zack (ZackCantellbury) | 11 comments Go Brigid and NIna! I'm go' kiss your asses! Yeah!
(Jks- LOL! LMFAO!)


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments My sentiments exactly.


Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!* | 440 comments Wow, I haven't checked this group in ages. I stink. But anyway...

No, I personally don't agree with reward systems. I think kids should learn to do good things just for the sake of being good––not because it will get them a reward. The best reward is simply praise, in my opinion. Like, if my kid did something good, I'd tell them they did the right thing. But I wouldn't be like, "Good job! Here's a cookie." And I think kids should be given time-outs or something like that, if they do something wrong.

Of course, I may be a bit biased since this is the way I was raised. My parents never relied on reward systems and I turned out a pretty good kid, if I do say so myself. :P So, I would probably use the same tactics with my own kids.


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments Guys, in all my comments I've been insisting that i'm fine with treating my kids without it being a system. And to answer yo question, Anila,I think verbally supporting my child, and letting them know when they've done something good or bad, with the occasional treat or present will probably teach my child right from wrong.


message 49: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
a reward could be having a story read to you, and i personally think that stickers dont count as presents.


message 48: by ♥ Rachel♥, Hey, whoa, I'm a mod! (new)

♥ Rachel♥ sHE beLIEveD (I_got_a_jar_of_dirt) | 767 comments Mod
Maybe. This topic is a bit confusing, as you mentioned somewhere above.


message 47: by Anila (new)

Anila I think it could be both? I just feel like a lot of the comments have come off as kind of 'no positive reinforcement ever' so... and if I'm reading it wrong, at least we will have conclusive clarification as a result.


message 46: by ♥ Rachel♥, Hey, whoa, I'm a mod! (new)

♥ Rachel♥ sHE beLIEveD (I_got_a_jar_of_dirt) | 767 comments Mod
Oh, I thought we were talking about systems where prizes were given for good behavior, sorry :P


message 45: by Anila (new)

Anila And a prize isn't the only form of reward.


message 44: by ♥ Rachel♥, Hey, whoa, I'm a mod! (new)

♥ Rachel♥ sHE beLIEveD (I_got_a_jar_of_dirt) | 767 comments Mod
A prize isn't the only form of positive reinforcement...just saying >.<


message 43: by Anila (new)

Anila So, out of curiosity, how would you teach your child right from wrong without positive reinforcement?


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments Well, I don't really feel the need to replicate humanity through rewards for my child. If I do ever have a child, I would like it to learn right from wrong WITHOUT having to be rewarding my child's every good action. I'm fine with a treat if my child is doing well in school, or making improvements in something; like, REALLY trying hard in something. I just don't want a whole SYSTEM where my child will expect a prize. It's no that I have a PROBLEM with the system exactly, but for the previously mentioned reasons, if given the choice, I wouldn't choose this parenting method.


message 41: by Kirby (new)

Kirby | 132 comments Nina wrote: "But in life, you DON'T always get something every time you do something good. I mean,in the long run, you do, but not always immediately."

so would you have less of a problem with a reward system where the reward was delayed? like, the kid has to continue working toward it all year, or something like that?


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments But in life, you DON'T always get something every time you do something good. I mean,in the long run, you do, but not always immediately.


message 39: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
I agree with Anila, that reward system are good for young kids- especially when, however much you explain it to them, they don't really get WHY they should bother doing something. And I also agree in saying that it isn't nice to be talked down to, and I hate i when teachers and so do that! Explaining things to a kid is just a better way of handling things. Plus, rewards systems are only a replica of real life work- you work, you get.


message 38: by Anila (new)

Anila I guess the trick there would be to couch it in terms of 'you're mature enough that you don't need x now'? It's all kind of theory for me, though, obviously, as I have no kids.


message 37: by ♥ Rachel♥, Hey, whoa, I'm a mod! (new)

♥ Rachel♥ sHE beLIEveD (I_got_a_jar_of_dirt) | 767 comments Mod
The only problem I can see with that is a child might start misbehaving if they suddenly stopped being rewarded for something. I mean, I didn't really ever have any sort of rewards for doing anything (except for once, and that was very out of the blue and never happened again :P) but when a punishment is imposed on something that wasn't previously regulated, I kind of rebel against that.


message 36: by Anila (new)

Anila Huh. At this point I can't really tell what's up for discussion - are we talking about systemic rewards, like sticker charts, or are we talking about if/then 'bribery' type rewards? And for that matter, what age group are we talking about?

So I guess I'll kind of toss out my two cents on all of those possibilities, just to cover my bases.

TO my mind, the best kind of parenting style is founded on mutual love and respect between parents and child - not authoritarian, not indulgent, but always respectful. Now, I don't have kids myself, but this is always the way I've interacted with them while babysitting - no talking down to them, no giving sidestepping answers if they ask me about complicated topics (unless it's something that's not age-appropriate) but explaining carefully. This is partly because I was a precocious child and have always found it frustrating when people talked down to me, and partly because (as Rachel mentioned above) I've always been more motivated to do something when I understand its purpose. The most frustrating varieties of homework, for instance, are the ones that feel like busywork, whereas the most tolerable or even enjoyable are the ones with clear goals.

That being said, there are some concepts that can't really be taught that way. It's hard, as a child, to take your mom seriously when she tells you to clean your room before you trip over something (until it happens, of course) and in that kind of situation something like a sticker chart is good. The individual stickers are sort of rewards in and of themselves, but often they're also a way of keeping track of how the child earns another reward - chocolate sauce on their ice cream on Saturday night or something like that. To me, that seems a pretty good way to handle things - you teach them that if they work and do things they don't like, they can thereby obtain things they do, and you make the 'cost' of the tangible reward large enough that it enforces a pattern of behavior. If it's tied to, say, cleaning a room, eventually the child will just be so accustomed to keeping their space tidy that they do it automatically.

Which brings me to another point - reward systems should be phased out as kids grow up. A seven year-old might need a sticker chart to get them to clean their room, but it would be silly for a fifteen year-old to have one. As the kid gets older, the reward and the system used should mature with them - and there should be a larger element of 'stick' to go with the 'carrot'. Younger kids don't understand punishment as well as older kids do, which is why I personally think anything more than scolding is a disproportionate response to most younger children's misbehavior. Older children are more capable of assessing consequences and the risk/benefit balance of a behavior; if they're threatened with having their privileges taken away, they understand the situation a lot better than a little kid does.

So for older children, something like... oh, getting a little extra dessert when they bring home good grades that they've worked hard for would be the only kind of 'reward system' I would favor. As part of the aging up, the reward should be harder to reach and slightly smaller, because as they mature hopefully they'll learn that the benefits of doing the right thing and doing it well are their own reward.

I don't think that reward systems create people who do the right thing for the wrong reasons if they're handled correctly. Rewards should be treated as a pleasant byproduct of good behavior, not the end for which behavior is the means. Kind of like when you're interacting with other people, you should be nice to them because they deserve your respect, not because you want something from them.

Hopefully this makes sense!


message 35: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
Did I say everything?


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments yep; everything.


message 33: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
Everything?


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments Well, i don't want a sticker to be given out after everything.


message 31: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
Ok, if I did something good, like did a nice drawing or tidied up not only MY mess, but somebody else's, a sticker mad me feel great! As a child, a sticker isn't any less special than £100! I mean, Yeah, doing extra chores or something isn't incredible, but it's nice for others, and I loved the stickers.


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments Well, if you had done something exceptional, and your parents had promised some kind of reward and you'd gotten a sticker, would you have felt satisfied? Just curious, 'tis all.


message 29: by Kirby (new)

Kirby | 132 comments I loved stickers as a kid...


message 28: by The Random Hedgehog (last edited Feb 09, 2012 12:36PM) (new)

The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments well, if they get 'a bloody sticker' after doing some expectational, its a bit of a let-down. I mean, if its exceptional, why not something a bit better? If its really that great.


message 27: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
A bloody sticker isn't a prize.


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments I think if that's what needs to be done, that's great for you guys, but I will make utterly sure that my children will know to tidy up, so it doesn't have to come to that. Plus, perhaps from a young age, stickers work fine, but eventually stickers will be just sticky paper to them. And what you said, about doing something exceptionally nice; well, if it REALLY is THAT excellent, then why need a reward system? Why not just an out of the blue treat? And if it is actually great, but not EXCEPTIONALLY great, does does a good thing always have to be rewarded? What happened to doing the right thing for the sake of it? Sometimes you don't need treats to feel the satisfaction of doing the right thing. And just because a parent doesn't spend money on it, doesn't mean it goes unnoticed. You can be motivated, supported and congratulated without having to have a prize.


message 25: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
Note please, that i said EXCEPTIONALLY nice.
And I think academic rewards aren't the only ones you should receive.


message 24: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
Well, a reward system, as I interpet it, is when a child does something good or nice and gets a reward. It should be exceptionally nice.
In my sisters case, and partially my own though not so much, my parents didn't get us into the habit of cleaning up and so from a young age. This was a mistake on their part. But around 7- this became a problem. We weren't used to tidying up after ourselves, and having a star chart helped. they didn't pay money on us, but just out a sticker up. That's not harmful, but it's got us into the routine and habit of putting our plates away, cleaning our room, and so on.


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments And about what you said about ME, well that's also something different. If you are speaking about POSITIVE REFERRALS (some certificate given out in my school) then, yes, I do enjoy getting them. HOWEVER, there is a difference between getting one of those, and a reward system. Yes, they are along the same lines, but there is a major difference.
I don't get a POSITIVE REFERRAL every time I do something good, I get one if I do something out-of-the-ordinary good. I don't get one if I behave mostly, for example, I might get one however if I motivated SOMEONE ELSE to ALSO behave. Do you see my point? And you may argue that with a reward system, you also only get things if you do something out-of-the-ordinary good, but then it is not a reward system treat, it is a congratulations treat you give the kid. do you get me? Are you following, Aleph?


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments Well, Aleph, that's something different, you see. This topic, so it states, is primarily about reward systems for kids, not chocolate to go toilet. From my understanding, a reward system is some kind of chart and when a child behaves well, or does a chore, or WHATEVER, they get a treat, or a sticker etc.. What you're talking about is slightly different. I feel like you're slightly going off topic.


message 21: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
I'm not talking about every day chores, though. No- those are things that should be expected of children. Tidying your room, putting your plates away.
But for example, with potty training, the way we have been weening my brothers onto the potty is by giving them a bit of chocolate every tim they go. Also making them feel more comfortable with the potty itself, but that's beside the point. This makes the potty a fun idea, that gets them rewards and encourages them to, well, GO.
And personally, I think rewards motivate most people I've met.
Including you, Nina.
I think that it's part of human nature to think, especially as a child when your views are still very primal, is there anything in it for me?
And even for people who aren't brought up with reward systems, if the answer is no- they're less likely to bother with it.
I read a great article on this along with other primal views, I'm off to find it.


message 20: by ♥ Rachel♥, Hey, whoa, I'm a mod! (new)

♥ Rachel♥ sHE beLIEveD (I_got_a_jar_of_dirt) | 767 comments Mod
I agree with the article, I've noticed myself and my sister being demotivated by rewards...and punishments too, to be honest. Explanations have always worked best for me, my sister goes on more of a "well I respect this person so if they tell me not to do something I won't" sort of thing.


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments Well, I haven't had a reward system, and I'm FINE, and while I understand that not all kids are like me, I'm sure there are other ways to support a child into doing the right thing than giving them a treat EVERY time. I think I have answered your question. Go into more detail if you want a better answer.


message 17: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
But they wouldn't get a reward for the slightest good thing they do- would they?
I mean, have you ever gotten rewards at school?
In fact, I know for a fact that you have, and that you enjoy getting them. They're not presents, or money, but things that say you've done something good. It should be like that at home, too. Not for everyone, but in most cases it will encourage a kid to do good things, or even just make them feel good about themselves. They may still learn right and wrong, but reward systems really boost one's self confidence.
And the whole point about reward systems is getting kids to work for what they get. Teaching a Kid to work, but to remember that life is shit and they wont get anything for it, just creates another generation of pessimists. I'm not saying that by not giving a child a reward system, they'll feel this way, but looking at your reasons it would lead me to believe that's kind of the point your making.
You still haven't really given a good answer to my question.


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments Aleph wrote: "I just don't see why you would avoid it... I agree, it depends on the kid and all, but why try to avoid it?"

I believe that children shouldn't be brought up thinking that every time they do the slightest of a good thing, they'll get a reward for it- because that's not how the world works. Sure, if they get excellent grades in school- or at least make good progress, I'll congratulate them for they're terrific work because things like that don't just HAPPEN, they work hard for it. So, sure, I might take them out as a treat, maybe give them a reward budget to spend at Hamleys (a toy shop)or WHATEVER, but I don't want them to just EXPECT that every time they do something, they'll get something. Who says they won't get something most of the time? I just don't want them to EXPECT it as though its their RIGHT to get something every time.

I think it does.


message 15: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
doesn't really answer my question...


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments Read comment 8.


message 13: by Aleph (new)

Aleph (Aleph123) | 745 comments Mod
I just don't see why you would avoid it... I agree, it depends on the kid and all, but why try to avoid it?


The Random Hedgehog (Booookworm3) | 256 comments Yeah I guess. But if I can help it, I'd probably avoid doing it, but if my child was really having difficulties with behavior and knowing right from wrong- then sure, I'd give it a go.


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