How do you celebrate your A student, while still encouraging your struggling student? Get all ability levels involved for success!
There is never a one size fits all approach to children with their own unique strengths and struggles. Yet tailoring rewards and consequences for each can be exhausting and inconsistent. With this Game of Life, the student will emulate very real life balance, while taking ownership of their own outcomes. Students of all abilities still have the same opportunity to be successful and have the personal control to decide what matters most to them. Being a good student is important, but not necessary to be successful in life. You can work hard or work smart!!
The Game of Life is a virtual account used to earn and spend money based on the child’s work and achievements.
The game handout starts with a brief list of rules. Example:
1.You earn money to provide the quality of life you wish to achieve. Lucky you, we will give you a base salary and your $5.00 allowance each week will be added to your virtual account.
2. You can be hired for the jobs listed below to earn your income, which will be directly deposited in your account. Poor performance may mean you will not be rehired for that job.
3. Bills must be paid for first
Following the rules, the game provides a menu of services with 4 parts:
These are the child’s responsibilities. Whether it be homework, dinner, or others, if the child doesn’t complete what is expected of them, they will have to pay it as a bill.
For example: the child needs to see a tutor. To ensure that they are participating and investing into the tutor’s time, they need to pay a portion of the cost: $10.
These provide the life the child wants to live! Once bills are paid and taken care of, the child can use their money however they see fit- dessert after dinner, sleep over with friend, play time at the park, etc. This gives them control to provide the live they want to live….and fixes the never ending parenting badgering:
Can I go to the park? Can I have a sleepover? Can I…? Can I…? Can I…?
My response….”I don’t know, CAN YOU??’
The key here is if the child does what they are supposed to, they will not have many bills to pay for. This leaves extra money to buy the freedom they want. If they are not handling business and following rules, their money will be going to bills and their natural consequence will be less money for the fun stuff. They can accept that as is, or they can work harder elsewhere to compensate for their expenses.
3.) JOBS FOR HIRE
The cherry on top of this all….you will have a nice and clean house! List the jobs you want help with, the jobs you want completed regularly, and the jobs you want your children to learn. Remember, if they don’t do a good job, they may not be rehired!
Because we are nice parents, we will offer bonus money for things that should already be done! No missing homework at school? Pay yourself. Aced a test? Extra money. Shout out for doing something good? Another payment.
This is a self-regulating game that takes the stress out of micromanaging consequences and rewards. The best way to implement is to simply hang a white board and let the children track their account balances. This will allow for easy updates and daily use of simple math in an ever-fluctuating game.