Structure...ideas

Casey - posted on 10/08/2010 ( 4 moms have responded )

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Hi there all! I wanted to pick your brain on structure and if there is anything special you do in your home. I am always up for ideas and help. My husband and I believe kids need displine and structure...we actually believe they want it.

These are a few simple ideas that I believe in help children and the family as a whole especially with busy and stressful lives people live.

1. Realistic bedtime and enforced
2. Eating at the table as a family
3. Chores (this is as simple as cleaning rooms or feeding the animals)
4. Snack times

I know there is more, but I really want to hear from the mommies.

Cheers

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Candi - posted on 10/08/2010

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Discipline, chores, and structure change as the child ages. We have set house rules and if they are broken, our kids have to pay money from their allowance. It helps keep them from breaking rules. We expect good grades on report cards. No exceptions! My son is highly gifted and my daughter is a straight A student. We know they can do the work. My youngest is in Kindergarten, so this doesn't apply to her yet. Eating is done at the table..no exceptions! No one eats until the blessing has been said. My kids are 11,10, and 5 so chores are age friendly. Bedtime has always been 9:00. Sometimes on Friday night, my two older ones get to stay up a little later. No video games allowed on School nights.We have very busy schedules and its tough keeping normal routines, but we work hard at it. Kids need stability and schedules.

Stifler's - posted on 10/09/2010

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I believe children like routines. Not "oi it's 5 PM get up here and eat your dinner so you can bath at 6 and be in bed at 7" if you've been out and had snacks at 3. But flexible routines. I think a bedtime at the same time is a good idea, Logan has always been in bed before 8 (he's 8 months) and we are calm after 6 no stirring him or tickling just dinner and cuddles and a bottle and bath. Eating as a family is something we'd like to enforce but since we have different meal times (he is hungry by 5 and my partner only gets home at 630 and I like to have dinner with him I just feed him and he plays while we have tea in the loungeroom where he is. When he's older I'd probably enforce afternoon tea and morning tea times (at the moment I give him a biscuit if he starts getting cranky, I shouldn't but I do, he's teething) and he'll definitely be helping do the dishes after dinner when he's old enough, keeping his own room tidy and putting his own pile of clean clothes away in his room.

[deleted account]

I agree and disagree. I fully believe that kids need discipline and structure. But I don't believe it needs to be rigid. We have a "flexible schedule". And there are certain rules we don't bend on. But I stay at home, so perhaps being flexible is a little easier for our family. Plus my husband works strange hours. So we HAVE to be flexible.



Examples, in case you are interested:

We don't have a set bedtime. Two nights a week we are at church late, and one night a week we eat with my parents and don't get home until late. BUT, when we are at home, our daughter will go to sleep within the same hour every night, sometime between 7-8. And she'll sleep 11-12 hours, regardless of what time she went to bed (even if we're home late). So she gets the proper sleep she needs. Plus, she always takes a 2 hour nap. Again, the time varies depending on the day. On Fridays we go to town for a music class and run errands. So her nap may be off, but once she's down, she'll sleep 2 hours. And it never messes with her sleeping at night.



Some things we don't bend on:

She is expected to pick up her toys before she goes to bed. Since she could walk, she knows where each thing goes.



Also, I allow one movie or tv show a day. She knows when it's over and will grab to remote and turn off the tv!



Another rule, you don't have to eat what's on your plate. But you won't get anything else until you do. She usually ends up eating at least a little of what we serve, even if she doesn't like it. Supper time itself varies depending on my husband's work schedule, so sometimes she'll eat before or after we do. To me, that's understandable, but she does sit with us at the table when we eat.

Julie - posted on 10/08/2010

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I am with you! Bedtime is non negotiable here. My little girls (3 and 4) are in bed by 8pm. We recently have started letting my older tow (7 and 8) stay up until 8:30. Mostly because it gives me an opportunity to read with them at their level without the younger two being bored and whiny because there are no pictures lol.

Homework is done right after they have had their snack. I don't want to worry about it all night and I never have to fight with them to get it done.

There is zero TV in our house during the week for the kids. They sit at a desk all day in school. They can play outside or build forts in their bedrooms whatever they want, but they need to be kids, not couch potatoes.

Chores are age appropriate. They are all responsible for their own rooms. They take turns feeding the dog. All clothes and backpacks have to be ready for the next day before bedtime. We don't give our kids an allowance. I feel like it is a good lesson that everyone has to contribute in the family. We are not paying them to live here. I put up two additional chores each week for my older two and if they choose to do those then they get a dollar for each.
They have to eat in the kitchen. They have to put their dirty clothes in the hamper. They have to hang their coats up. All of these very little things make my life and the household run much more smoothly. and they take 5 seconds!

If they misbehave they get an age appropriate punishment. It might be timeout, grounded from TV for the weekend, etc.

Those are the biggies at my house.

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