A few weeks ago I bought some little tokens that say “I got caught being good” and a couple of items from the $1 Spot at Target (which is like crack for a three year old). I told the kids that if they earned 10 tokens they could get a prize from the newly created prize closet. They can earn tokens for good behavior and using the potty. They can also lose tokens for undesirable behavior. Maria is rather compliance driven and likes to get stuff, so she took quite well to the idea. Grant started out okay, but quickly lost tokens and we thought he might never get his bat. Maria would declare “I WINNING!” and would also tell us when Grant needed to lose a token if he wasn’t behaving (she stopped when we told her she would lose tokens for telling us how to deal with Grant). It was no surprise that she made it to ten first. Grant eventually declared “I don’t like tokens” out of his frustration with his progress. However, the child is hard headed and his stubbornness leads to loss of rewards. The following conversation will shed some light on his thought process:
Grant: I’ll do better on Sunday.
Me: Well buddy, today is Sunday.
Grant: What day comes after Sunday?
Grant: I’ll do better on Monday.
It’s one of those things where you can’t help but laugh. He didn’t miss a beat. He’s a smart one for sure.
Grant finally did earn enough tokens for his prize and we went to Target with them to stock up. It was like torture not getting to immediately play with their stuff, but also allowed us leverage since they know some of the goodies that await them. In fact, it only took two days for them both to earn another prize and Maria even went to the potty at the nursery at church the other day. She gets so excited when she goes to the bathroom. She looks up and smiles and says “I peed! Want to see?” She also gets excited for Grant and wants to see his potty deposits as well. We’ve definitely come a long way since her absolute refusal to sit on the potty a month ago and I’m hoping this means we are on the road to being diaper free. $30 spent on cheap gimmicks will be worth it!