I don’t do what most parents do. In fact, I do it the other way around. Sometimes, I don’t do it at all.
I am talking about giving rewards to children. Especially when it comes to motivating your child to achieve academic excellence.
(There are reasons why I don’t do it. To know more, read this past article:
I don’t motivate J and K with rewards to bribe for good results. I tell them to do the best they can. And to do it out their own motivation and willingness – at least not for some new, shiny toys.
This time is different. Even though I didn’t promise them rewards before the exams, we decided to reward them for their good results.
Unlike other parents, we did it the opposite way. I gave them surprise rewards after they have shown good grades in the exams. In other words, I did it after-the-event not before. As it turned out, it’s quite a pleasant surprise for them. Unexpected bonuses!
I let them have the freedom to choose what they want for the reward as long as it’s within the allocated budget. They are on cloud nine.
J still undecided on what to get but K got his reward yesterday.
Here comes the unexpected challenge for K. I take the reward up a notch to make it worth the money even more!
Knowing him very well that K’s a person who wants something instant, I knew he would have opened the gift the moment we reached home (He even wanted to open it while we were still at the mall!).
Instead, I threw a challenge to him right before he got a chance to do so. Poor thing.
Why do I want to do that? I want to “train” him so that he has control over his impatience and desires. I asked him to wait until noon the following day to open his reward. It’s entirely up to him to decide whether to take the challenge up and I didn’t force him.
He accepted the challenge albeit hesitantly. I am secretly happy for him.
Guess what? He passed the “endurance” test with flying colors. Again, I am so proud of him.
As I am writing this, he is happily assembling the reward (a.k.a. toy) with J.
For even more unorthodox parenting ideas, check out my “The Nonconformist’s Guide to Parenting.”
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