Today was one of those days as a parent that I had to improvise and come up with a new plan. Late last week I had to take away some of my oldest’s privileges due to some missing grades. I took away the typical things; television, video games, electronics, etc. The only problem with these punishments is that I’m also punished because now I have to find a way to entertain him because he’s bored. I know I’m not alone, we’ve all been there with our kids at different stages in their lives. My goal today was to find that balance so that I could get some of my weekend chores done and he would not be bored.
In a moment of venting I posed the following question to some of my Facebook friends, “I need a list of creative punishments that don’t punish the parent! Taking away TV, computer, etc just isn’t cutting it! I’m the only one that suffers.”
By the time I had asked this, both kids were being punished. Don’t you love it how the one child in trouble finds a way to antagonize the other child so that they both have to suffer the consequences together? I already had a few ideas from my list of chores that they could help me with, but they weren’t going to like it.
Here is a list of “chores” and tasks that would work as punishment for your school aged children.
- Empty the litter box. Let’s just say that my oldest did NOT want anything to do with this one and complained the entire time!
- Clean the baseboards. This one was shared by more than one of my friends. Guess I know why their houses are so clean!
- Cleaning cabinet doors.
- Vacuum. I’m a little too OCD with my vacuum for this one and I think my kids would enjoy it too much.
- Wash windows.
- Pick up sticks in the yard.
- Clean the grout on tile floors.
- Take out the trash. Tested this one out today and my youngest refused because it was ‘too gross!”
- Clean the bathroom.
- Scrub the toilets.
- Pull weeds.
- Clean the blinds.
- Fold the laundry.
- Do the dishes.
- Clean the pet hair from the vacuum. I think my son liked this one today because he got to “tinker” with my vacuum and get it to work again. Shockingly, he found a nerf bullet clogging the hole and my vacuum works a LOT better now.
- Organize the pantry.
- Organize the tupperware cabinet. I’ve used this one on several occasions and they do not enjoy it one bit!
- Clean the junk drawer.
- Dust light fixtures or fans.
The day actually turned out to be fun and WE ended up getting a lot accomplished as a team. They couldn’t argue or say no since they were both being punished; but they tried to resist a few tasks. At the end of the day, I found that I yelled a lot less today and I didn’t do all the housework by myself. I guess there are some advantages to them being in trouble. I think the worst punishment for my oldest today was that he wasn’t allowed to read ALL DAY!! He is the biggest bookwork I know and he could escape into a book 24 hours a day if we let him. Don’t worry, he gets his books back tomorrow. I’m not sure when I’ll return the video games and television though; they don’t need those as much during the week anyways.
What other ways have you been successful at punishing or disciplining your children without suffering yourself?
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Crystal H says
I always HATED cleaning. My parents made us do it every Saturday regardless of if we were good or not. Dishes were the worst for me.
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Jill S says
I make mine pick up toys downstairs a couple of times a day. Hello, mom’s going to faceplant otherwise. But they really only do their rooms a sparse pick up at night, and the play area maybe once a month unless they’ve torn it all to hades. We lack storage in a serious way.
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I agree cleaning is the best way to punish the kids. You get a clean house, teach them about cleaning and discipline them all at the same time. My parents used that strategy with me and I think it works. It might have worked too well, now I am a clean freak. Lol