Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Credit Rating

We have in our family a credit system. This was a system I came up with in trying to solve a particular problem in our family. The problem was we had as a family had stopped our morning routine of getting up early and being diligent at our morning prayer and bible reading. This was mostly because I was not getting up early. I have been slack and sleeping in. This had come about so gradually over a period of time and the children started to copy my behaviour. SURPRISE, SURPRISE.
For all of my life I have been an early riser varying my rising time from 5am at some stages through till 6am.

This however was pre building a house and pre Daddy working interstate. From these two experiences I have over time become - gasp - a late riser.
Trying to combat this in the children led to the credit system. The system has since grown to include added bonus points .
To earn morning credits yo have to accomplish the following:
1. Get up at 6am
2. Make bed, tidy around sleeping space, personal grooming,
3. do the assigned helping job for a younger sibling.
4. Read a chapter of the bible and do morning prayer time.
5. Go down stairs and do a morning credit job eg; open curtain, make porridge, set table for family breakfast, unstack the dishwasher from last night, and others like this.

This entitles the child to 10 credits.
As I wanted to get them to do some aerobic exercise I added another bonus. If you go for a 1/2 hour walk you earn another 5 credits.
Therefore you can get a maximum or 15 credits in any given morning.
All our middle children have been most eager to do this.
BIG DEAL do I hear you say.
Perhaps I failed to mention that the credits are redeemable for what we call "digital entertainment". For those who don't know me I have always been very anti computer games and very limited video/DVD time. We do not watch TV at all, not even Stephen and I. We also mostly watch agreed upon family movies together. This means very rarely does any one person get his or her own choice as "compromise" is the key phrase.
So you can cash in your credits for computer time or an own choice movie.
The cost involved is as followers:
1 movie cost = 150 credits
For 1/2 hour of computer time = 50 credits
for an episode DVD time ie 1/2 hour of eg Hogans Heroes of The Flying Nun cost = 50 credits.
All credits have to be signed by me, stating who it is, how much the credit card is worth,and my signature. On the reverse side there has to be 1 heart drawn for each credit.
These credits have to be returned to me at the time of "digital entertainment".

The children are also offered the opportunity of earning extra credits for anything extra I may need doing. Popular credit jobs are: finding lost items, cleaning grotty stuff up, making things, "fly bounty"( a whole other post), peeling potatoes, tidying up the little ones mess if it is huge etc.

One interesting thing with the credit system is the fact that some of the children are "savers" they don't like to spend their credits and compare to see who has the most credits.
Saxon has been the reining champion so far. He was the first to get 100, the first to get 500, the first to get 1000 and now has 1460. He rarely likes to 'spend" them and if he does is always looking for credit jobs to replace them.
The system works really well as a motivational and reward tool.
However I don't know who gets the most out of it the children or me.

And if you are wondering I am still struggling with getting up in the mornings.


Gloria said...

That is a great idea and just what I need. I've been trying to think of a tangible, doable reward system. Thanks for posting this!

Erin said...

Just what are you planning on using your credits for?
This reminds me of my Koala who saved her Easter eggs up for so long one year that she still had them the next year.


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