Stefanie (ooph.com) has a brilliant Back To School tip for parents that she recently posted on San Diego MOMfia. Simply brilliant. I can’t tell you how many
arguments conversations we have had with our 8-year-old over bedtime… or brushing teeth… or homework. The same stuff he does every day. Nothing changes yet he thinks he can test us. Thinks being the keyword.
I’m so thrilled that we found this now (because Stefanie has teen boys, she knows what’s up) so that when we do have phones and other teenager appropriate devices in our house… let’s just say my hope is that he (and the other kids) will be used to the idea of the Back To School Contract.
Read this excerpt from Stefanie, brilliant I tell ya:
Want your kids to become perfect little angels who never argue and do everything you tell them to do this school season? Yes? Then don’t have children.
But. The contract below will get you closer to that lack of reality.
School is starting and we will begin the mad dash of getting the paperwork filled out, school supplies and clothes purchased, wrangling the kids back into a decent bedtime and MOST IMPORTANT OF ALL, the Back to School Contract.
Hear angels singing? You won’t. It isn’t that great, but it’s REALLY REALLY good.
Below is a copy of a basic outline for a Back to School Contract:
When they get home from school they may have a snack and spend 30 minutes playing. (They deserve it.) Then it is down and dirty homework time.
Have chores for your kids. From kindergarten on. They can put their dishes in the dishwasher. They can be responsible for feeding a pet. It can be something as simple as putting all of their toys away. Whatever it is, give them a family responsibility.
Television during the school week will be after dinner, after all homework has been checked, all chores completed, all showers taken and teeth brushed. No television before dinner. Any extra time before dinner is to be spent outside practicing sports or playing.
Video Games: (This probably only applies to boys.)
No video games during the week. PERIOD. On the weekends, you may play one hour per day after homework that is due on Monday is complete and you have completed your daily chores.
You may use the computer instead of watching television. See “Television” for rules.
Bedtime will be at (whatever time you deem fair in your household.)
Provide weekend rewards if the week goes as planned. Ice cream for the young ones and sleepovers for the older ones.
Everyone signs the agreement and while it doesn’t alleviate every argument it gets rid of most disagreements and shortens the others.
What do you think? Will you be writing up a Back To School Contract? I’m drafting one right now for the 8-year-old. But like Beth (HipMamaB.com) mentioned, I’m going to wait for Back To School Night to finalize the homework details– so I know the teacher’s expectations for the school year.