So I was getting ready to meet with a friend for a cup of coffee. As I was leaving my li’l Rosebug runs up to me and says “Can I do my homework on the computer while you are gone?” I thought that was a great idea, and told her as much. And I reminded her “You are finding pictures (in her little art program) that end with the letter M.” Disappointment crossed her face because she thought she was going to be just playing around in the art program, doing whatever she wanted, and not actually DOING any homework. Then she said “No, I changed my mind, I don’t want to do it.” And I responded “No, I thought that was a great idea, so you will do it.” And then with great faith and expectations (and echoes of her whining), I left.
After a great hour of coffee and conversation with my friend, we parted ways and I called Bob and asked him if he wanted me to pick up dinner on the way home. He liked that idea so I decided to go through fast-food Mexican, “Sombreros”. I contemplated if I should get anything for The ‘Bug, because she had already eaten a big dinner. But, as far as she is concerned, “There is always room for fast food!” so I got her a couple rolled tacos.
When I got home, I went in and asked Bob how she had been, and he said “Horrible. She whined and complained and hemmed and hawed and accomplished exactly nothing.”
About then she came running around the corner, and her eyes lit up when she saw the fast food bag. Then she says “Terri, I have some bad news. There are NO pictures of anything that ends in the sound of /m/on that computer.
My response? “Well, then, ‘Bug, I have some bad news for you, too. There is nothing in this bag for you. I had bought you a treat for doing well on your homework while I was gone, but….”
Oh my! Suddenly she was inspired to try again. But, in my book, she lost her chance. So, no. No rolled tacos.
And she was NOT happy about it. So unhappy, in fact, that I got tired of listening to her temper tantrum and told her to take it in her room.
Eventually she calmed down, came out and I read her a couple stories, and she went to bed relatively happy.
It is my opinion that she shouldn’t do the work for a treat. She needs to do the work because it is her responsibility. Receiving occasional rewards for being responsible is okay. But I am not going to bribe her by telling her beforehand that she will get a treat if she does what she is supposed to do.