Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Sticker Chart 101

This, my friends, is a sticker chart. It's the parental bribe to get a preschool child to do what you would like him to do. In this case, we are speaking of the child pictured here. Said child's sleeping habits have progressively deteriorated to the point where his father and I now will do just about anything to get him to go to sleep by himself, to sleep through the night and to stay in bed after 4 a.m. (All things he did before 3 weeks ago.) And to allow his sister to sleep until her regular wake-up time, which means not screaming and yelling when asked to return to bed because it's ridiculously early.
There is the opportunity to 'earn' 19 Matchbox cars. This, however, will take 138 days. Which is roughly 20 weeks. The first car comes after 2 days of good sleep behavior. The second car after three days, and so on, until we culminate at 9 days between car rewards.
Said child actually hates stickers. He is the only child I know who gets angry when he is offered stickers. (ex. A: At the doctor's office..."Why do they always give me stickers!?") So it was an easy thing to buy the requested Finding Nemo stickers. He does, however, ADORE cars.

We start tonight. Wish us luck.

ETA: As luck would have it, 4yo's first night to earn stickers toward cars was thwarted by sick younger sister last night. He did get two out of three of the requirements, though, and so was awarded a sticker. Can't blame him for being awoken by screaming, sick little sis.

8 comments:

Anne said...

Oh dear - I hope it goes well. I'm sure it will be nice for the entire family if the little one can get back into good sleep habits. Good luck!

tiennie said...

Great idea! Finding something that will motivate your child is so much better than punishing and/or yelling - but it can be so hard when you're soooo tiiirrreeeddd!

Sharon said...

From a Mom whose almost 4 year old still sleeps on the floor next to her, please let me know how it goes. Sleep is the one thing all us parents strive for. Just one good night's sleep (she wouldn't go for the stickers either)

Mandy said...

The bribe! I've used that many a times myself. Sending you (and the child) good sleepy vibes for tonight and many nights.

Kat said...

Good luck, hope it all works out!

Liz K. said...

Geez! Good luck with that.

Peggy said...

Ah, bribery... My kids are about the same ages as your and I can't say I'm innocent. The sticker chart is a great idea- hope everything works for you!

Malena fwmld@hotmail.com said...

I think you are on the right track. What we did with our now 16-yr old daughter was: I gave her a set amount of tv time each day. (She was 5 at the time.) At the same time we got her a loft bed for Chistmas, hoping that the "new" would help. Shortly after that, I made "tokens" for tv time, in varous amounts. 10 minutes, 30 minutes, etc. and "movie" tokens. She started each day with an alloted amount. The first night, I told her I would leave the room for 1 minute. If she didn't give me any hassle, she got maybe 5 extra minutes of tv. But if she did, I would take away, say 15 minutes. Each night I increased the time out of the room, until she finally was sleeping by the time I returned. It was such a relief!