Wednesday, July 4, 2012


I spent 3 full days at the CHEC (Christian Home Educators of Colorado) Conference in Denver and took home more than I imagined.  This time I approached the conference from a completely different mentality, since we have been homeschooling for a couple years now.  I opened my mind to other aspects of home education, besides just the academics.  I was inspired by the speakers and felt like I was given a better vision for our children , an improved framework to build our school upon.  

"You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up." Deuteronomy 6:7

We will no longer just require our children to obey the Lord, but will remember that ultimately we are the example our children will follow.  We are the role models for our children first and foremost.  Our discipline, which at times felt like we were grasping at straws is now paramount in our homeschooling as we have approached compulsory "school age."  We can no longer spend our days fighting over getting the work done, it HAS to get done.  

This leads me to a new program called, Accountable Kids.

This program has been a huge God send!  This is the first positive reward discipline program we have found and the kids are doing very well with it.  

The  kids have a set of cards to complete morning, afternoon and evening (agreed upon tasks & non-paid chores).  They complete their chores and earn tickets when a set of cards is completed (possibly earning 3 tickets a day).  These tickets are now used for privileges (riding a bike, going out for ice cream, going to the park), showing the children that there are basic chores that need to be completed before we can go and have fun.  Tickets can also be taken away for bad behavior (arguing, complaining, hitting, etc).  It's amazing at how fast these tickets have adjusted our children's behavior and we no longer have to feel like the bad guy.  They know that their behavior led to missing out on a fun activity.  We love how many opportunities the program gives kids to earn rewards for positive behavior, such as the "Good Behavior Card."

When we catch the kids in a "Fruit of the Spirit" moment (showing extra kindness, love, self-control, being a peacemaker, gentleness, goodness, etc) they can earn a Good Behavior Card.  These are not given every time they exhibit such a behavior; however, at least weekly.  The child with the most Good Behavior cards can pick a special prize the whole family can enjoy.

Ella's face when she earned a Good Behavior Card for helping me when I had broken a glass bowel (she immediately grabbed a broom, lead the pets out of the way, kept little brother company and away, while I cleaned up) was just priceless.  She was so excited  that we recognized she had done something worthwhile and meaningful to all of us.  I knew right then, that we had found a discipline program that would work.

We have two more steps to really have a full program in place, including earning Bonus Bucks for extra chores completed.  The best thing is that the kids are excited about the program too!  They love the structure the program provides and the positive rewards that are given, but overall we love the new freedom it gives us to spend more time rewarding good behaviors and less time punishing the bad.  

We've enjoyed the program so much, we will be implementing this in our school day as school work is completed as well, utilizing the travel boards.

We decided these travel boards would be great too, while camping or on trips.  These allow us to maintain our regular routine and structure.  I'll update this post in a few weeks to let you know how we implement the program at "School" and how it has worked for us.  We're praying it works just as well.

This new discipline technique is more positive, rewarding and makes the kids accountable for all their actions.  We definitely think this makes for a good foundation for our children.