Make Rules Your Kids Will Follow // How to make more effective rules
“No farting. That is the rule,” yells my youngest child at her older sibling. Yep, we have rules around farting in my house. Serious rules, with consequences. No joke.
Rules, rules, rules. Some rules are flexible, and others are not. The farting rule is non-negotiable. How can you tell the difference between a serious rule and a more flexible rule in the house? It is about reinforcement! The Farting Rule is strict in our house because everyone reinforces it, and my four kids are quick to tell on each other with this rule.
“What?” you might be thinking? Let me explain…
The FARTING RULES:
- No farting when someone is eating. You must leave the room.
- No farting in the car with the windows rolled up.
- No farting in the car without warning others it is coming- or making the fart loud so that everyone can roll down the windows before the smell hits us.
- No silent farts EVER if you are not alone.
- When you fart, you must walk away from the group and count to 15 before you can come back to the group. (Farts take about 10-15 seconds to ooze out of your clothes and hit the air.)
- When you must walk away for a fart, you must be at least 15 feet away from others.
These are the real rules in my house. Why? Because rules are best followed when the kids make the rules. Many teachers have students come up with classroom rules on DAY 1. Teachers know that when students have input on what the rules are INSTEAD of having the rules imposed on them, students are more likely to follow the rules! Also, if the students also come up with the consequences of breaking the rules, then they are more likely to accept the consequences graciously. Involving your children in rulemaking also gives your child a feeling of control and shows that you care about their opinions. It is a small respectful gesture that ANY parent can do to gain rapport with their child and make the rules in the house more effective. It will also give you, the parent, an idea of what boundaries are important to your child. Give it a try! Make Rules Your Kids Will Follow!
And if you come over to my house… you now know that we will not let you fart freely.
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