Monday, August 8, 2011

In polls among the parents of elementary and middle school kids

In polls among the parents of elementary and middle school kids, over half of respondents identify ENTITLEMENT as the biggest parenting challenge they face. A sense of entitlement is the polar opposite of a sense of responsibility and robs kids of initiative and motivation.

Kids’ sense of economic entitlement can be largely fixed by taking two simple steps:

1. Stop buying toys and games and gadgets for them and eliminate allowances that are not performance-based. "Allowance" is a welfare or entitlement term and promotes the idea of something for nothing.

2. Set up a simple family economy where kids have a couple of basic chores involving the common areas of the home and keep track of when they do those chores. Have them also keep a record of the days when they finish their homework, music practice, or other tasks that you designate without being reminded. Assign numbers to these daily responsibilities (don't have more than three or four) and tell them they can fill out a slip each day with the number of tasks completed, get it initialed by a parent, and put it in a big sturdy box with a lock on it and a slot in the top. That box becomes the family bank, and on Saturdays it is opened and instead of “allowance” you have "payday" where kids receive an amount proportionate to how many tasks they remembered and completed. They then are responsible for buying all their own clothes, toys, and gadgets.

It is this sense of “earned ownership” that counteracts entitlement!

And once you have it working for your kids’ money and toys and clothes, you can begin to apply the same ownership principle to even more important things like their grades, their goals, their choices, and their values.

The Entitlement Trap is the product of a decade-long search for practical, workable ideas and methods for helping elementary and middle school age kids take real ownership of all aspects of their lives and thus to make parents their consultants and helpers rather than their nagging, control-taking, initiative-destroying managers.

Thousands of parents have already pre ordered The Entitlement Trap, insuring that they will receive it on the very day it is published (and taking advantage of the pre order discount at, and other places where books can be ordered on line.)

It is already clear that The Entitlement Trap is going to be more than a book. It is becoming a movement and a cause made up of parents who want to prepare their children to thrive in this economic hurricane and who know that the only we can save this debt-ridden and entitled country of ours is one child at a time, one family at a time!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Eyre's! I love this idea! I definitely see SOOOOO much ENTITLEMENT with the various kids I work with. Can't wait to read the book! I've got three little boys, two of which are in joy school this fall (ages 4 and 3). My question is - can I start them this early with "payday"? Does it look/work any differently for small children?