Be A Star! is a simple, effective tool that gives parents a consistent, structured and successful method of discipline. Children actually see that they have control of their own behavior.
Easy to use
For ages 4-12
All parents want their children to be “well-behaved” and so they discipline them. I believe that some kinds of discipline are more effective than others. But ultimately our task is to teach children self-control so they can navigate through life all by themselves.
One way to improve behavior is to reinforce a behavior by giving rewards. When a child does something positive, praise her verbally and sometimes give her a reward. By doing this she will consciously and unconsciously learn to repeat the behavior.
For those of you who use my rewards chart “Be A Star” the reward is getting points and moving towards the happy star; eventually this translates to a reward of the child’s choice. Children see their marker go up and they realize that they actually have control of their own behavior; a behavior which can bring good things.
Some people may consider this bribing, but all people and animals are motivated to act or try something new because of a potential benefit. Most people would not get up for work everyday if they were not paid. In the same way, children need encouragement to behave in a new way.
Very young children want to please parents and this may be enough of a
reward. However, as children age, they have a mind of their own. They want to do things their own way, which often does not coincide with the parent’s point of view. This is the moment at which the principles of behavior modification are effective.
As the Be A Star chart demonstrates, parents should respond to negative behaviors by giving some kind of negative feedback verbally, and if using the rewards chart, the child’s marker moves down, towards the unhappy star, and a consequence of the parent’s choosing.
This behavior modification system, positively and negatively reinforcing behavior, immediately and concretely, works because it is balanced and fair. It allows children of all ages to actually see how they have a choice…to behave in a way that earns them rewards, or to behave in a way that earns consequences.
Another reason that Be A Star works well is that the parent feels in control of herself and the situation. Instead of yelling or threatening, the parent simply and immediately responds, by giving or taking away points. This empowers the parent. Both the parent and child learn self-control.