Saturday, January 2, 2010

Positive Discipline Tool Card - Routines

Help children create routine charts to encourage responsibility.

  1. Create routine charts WITH your child.
  2. Brainstorm tasks that need to be done.
    (bedtime, morning, homework, etc.)
  3. Take pictures of child doing each task.
  4. Let the routine chart be the boss:
    "What is next on your routine chart?"
  5. Do not take away from feelings of capability by adding rewards.
I have to confess that I have attempted this process of creating routine charts in the past without much success. Most of that is due to my lack of follow through. I can recall when the kids were much younger I took pictures of all their morning routines. We created the routine charts, put them up on their bedroom walls and then completely forgot about them. Next thing I knew...I was back to my usual morning routine of reminding them to do every little task. "Have you brushed your teeth? Did you make a lunch? What about your library book?" Not only was I reminding them to do every little thing, but several times a week I would receive a phone call from the school. "Dad, I forgot my lunch."

So let's see how it works this time. As my children and I sat down to discuss this tool card, the most important step seemed to be the part about brainstorming tasks that need to be done. This really got the kids thinking about what they needed to do every day. They even came up with things I hadn't even thought of.

So after the brainstorming I set them free to create their routine charts. I didn't interfere too much in this process. They seemed to be excited about taking ownership for their own routine charts. My daughter has been very interested in typewriters lately, so she decided to type her routine chart. My son opened up Microsoft Word and started creating his routine chart using the Word clip art files. I didn't even know Word had clip art files, so I learned something today.

After a few minutes they were both finished and hung their new routine charts on their doors. Now it is time to sit back and see how they follow through.

Stay Tuned!

Emma's Routine Chart

Gibson's Routine Chart

If you would like to share your children's routine chart creations, email a picture to We'll find a way to share them on the blog.


Anonymous said...

It worked! Well, at least it worked for today :-) I had purchased the cards some time back, and based on the newsletter that I receive from Positive Discipline, came to investigate your blog/52 week challenge a couple of days ago. So then based on your post on Saturday night decided to tackle a perennial problem in our household regarding homework for our 4 year old using the routines tool. On Sunday my son and I worked out an afterschool routine of math/lunch/reading then nap, wrote it out on a sheet of paper (complete with drawings) and posted it to the fridge where he could see it - and i just got email from our Au Pair worked out today! Will let you know if it works tomorrow ;-)

Jane Nelsen said...

I'm impressed with Emma's typing. How does she do it without mistakes???

Anonymous said...

Another successful day! He did his reading and math work, and did it well! However, our Au Pair does note that he's very hungry when he returns from school, so the two of them brainstormed that he would first eat, then do the math, then have a little play break and then we do the reading work and then nap ....they will try that tomorrow. I will update the posted routine with my son tonight for the fridge.

Single Dad Brad said...

Yay! I'm very excited about your success! So far it is working for us as well. My daughter was so cute when I picked her up from school. She said "Dad, we only have one minute to get home so I can start on my routine!" :-)

Anonymous said...

Last year about this time I started a velcro routine chart with my 3 and 1/2 year old. He could already read really well. So I had words down one side and pictures with velcro down the other and everytime he finished one he would put up the matching picture. He loved it and got to the point where he didn't need it anymore. I might need to reinstate it now though. I am nagging too much. Thanks for the blogg.

Anonymous said...

We modified the routine chart a little by little through the week, but we have finally landed on something that seems to work for everyone..and amazingly we have had completion of reading and math work at home every single day this week - a record! Can't wait for the next card :-)