Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Building a Stronger Family

I went to a class last night , the class was taught by a Mom with 6 children. Jamie and I know this family and have many times said to each other, "what an amazing family" those are incredible kids, if Ryan turns out anything like so and so, we would be thrilled".; And so I went to learn her secrets. I was telling a friend and she suggested I post my notes:

We all want Harmony in our homes, we all hate to nag and pick at our children, we don't like it when there are meltdowns, or when our kids fight. This Mom Swears that most of those things never happen in her home. (Its true we are witnesses)


From the time our kids were small we have emphasised that we are a family and we are all in this together.

1.The number one responsibility: We respect everyone in the family. That means when they are young teach them that they pull for each other, and help and love each other. That they all know what is going on in each others lives. That they might pray for each other. Each person should feel respected and loved by each member of the family.

She said she stopped any fighting the second it began, before it could esculate. Even though it was hard and took los of consistency,they don't ever have fights. She said it might seem like she is too involved, but after a while they just don't even try.

2. Everything has a consequence: Instead of nagging or being on her kids, she tries to keep things positive, and work with them. Sometimes a task might seem overwhelming to a child. She suggests breaking them down into smaller tasks that are more attainable. The first few times do it with you kids, that way they learn the correct way to (clean).

They have to fix their bed every morning before school. If they don't, that night before prayer, they are kindly reminded that they will be making every ones bed in the morning. She said it only took a couple of times, and everyone makes their bed. There is no fighting, they just know what the consequence is.

Make sure to be consistent with your consequences!

If their room is a disaster( she said it is not OK in her house) then she kindly lets them know that they need to do a disaster room job(like clean out a closet, or wash baseboards) Problem solved they would rather keep their room up then have to add another chore.

3. The 10 minute clean up: each night before family prayer, she says its time to do a 10 minute clean up! Everyone pitches in and helps. She sets the timer, and everyone picks up what has accumulated during the day(shoes, backpacks, books,) And then she doesn't have to take a hour before bed to get everything put away. It keeps the house form getting to messy.

4.She makes a chore chart each week, it had boxes for the kids to check off. She picks a day of the week, usually Thurs or Friday. That is when they do the chores. Once the boxes are checked they are done.


She keeps a family calendar with all the lessons and other events to remind her. (I'm sure most of you already do this). She posts it in a common place so that the kids can know what is going on with each other.

How to teach your kids to work: It is so important to get down and work with them. When you work together, it isn't so hard. After dinner everyone takes 10 minutes to clean up dinner. So easy! For other jobs, they say "Ben, I need you to help me for 2 hours to clean the garage. By setting a time limit, they seem to have better attitudes, and not complain so much. Make sure to only do it for the time set.

She says when her kids start to throw a fit or get upset, she questions how she is handling the situation. Is she being positive? She tries to keep things calm.

Each morning the children take turn unloading the dishwasher before they eat. This teaches them to get up early enough to do it. then it is unloaded ready to load for the day, each child has one day a week.


One parent meets with the kids Once a month, remind the kids to come with some short term goals. Things they want to work on for the month, this is also where you might ask them what is going on at school, or with friends. But make sure the goals are age appropriate, for a younger child it might be
1. keep room clean
2. No whining
3. Be nicer to brother...
4, Be happy

The older kids would have more personal goals. The goals are taped on the inside of each kids closet, and the next month they review the last months goals.


Have fun together, healthy competition, games, planned activities, that kids can look forward too.

She closed saying that if her kids leave home saying I had a great childhood and my family really loved me! Then she will feel like she has done her job!

Of course these are only ideas, but I really liked the concept. I am hoping to implement a few in my home.


Ariana said...

I think this stuff is pure brilliance....especially the part where if somebody is throwing a fit, the parent stop and makes a quick mental evaluation of the situation to assess if THEY are the ones spawning negativity. This is something my parents could never figure out and I hated it. Awesome stuff!! Thanks so much for posting it!

Harmony said...

Emily, Thanks for posting these ideas. I am really going to try and impelement some of them and see how it goes.

Teresa said...

Good stuff Em....I learned some great tips.