Thursday, April 4, 2013

Family Awards

In case you can't tell, Tyjah is PROUD.
He is proud because he got recognized in front of the whole family for something extra special and because he gets to hang his award on his door all week.  But, he is probably proudest that his mom and dad secretly noticed something extraordinary that he did that week.

It was only a few months ago that I read a fantastic post on 71toes about family awards and decided to adapt it for our own family.  

Although we've had some repeats (I save the awards), we try to look for something unique each week and hand out 1-3 awards at family council.  This helps keep the focus on displaying true character rather than acting only in hopes of receiving a known award.  

I'm not exactly an artist, but I kind of like the homemade look of our signs. 

The kids get a kick out of the names we come up with for the awards.  Holey Moley was awarded to both of our boys after they just showed up next to me in the garden and dug two humungous holes for our blueberry bushes. No one asked them to.  They just saw their mom outside working hard to get the new bushes in the ground before dinner.  There was no mention of possibly earning an award at the time.  It doesn't work that way.  

Holey Moley and all of our other awards are given out only for extraordinary service.  In other words, we expect them to be kind and helpful every day.  But there are some times when they really go above and beyond our expectations.  Like the time I came in from working outside to find Halle standing on the counter unloading all the clean dishes into the cabinet.  Not an easy job for my five-year-old Dish Diva!

These two always want their picture taken with their awards.

Before we hand out awards each week, we remind everyone that even if they don't receive an award, they should be excited for those who do.  Brothers and sisters should be each other's best cheerleaders!
We are also quick to tell them that just because they didn't receive an award doesn't mean that they are not appreciated or that we didn't notice something special they did that week. 

Handing out awards every week is a simple way we tell our children "Hey, we notice you and appreciate your contribution to our family."

It's a whole lot of fun, too!

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