I’m a mean mom. There. I said it.
My 11-year-old has been thinking it for years, so I might as well admit it.
As a Certified Mean Mom, each summer, I come up with a list of daily tasks that must be completed in order to have screen time. Our kids (one in particular) are really sensitive to too much screen time. This helps us manage screen time as a team, with less arguing and negotiating. Less. Not none. This is an important distinction.
This is the first summer that Henry has an official list. He’s 4 and is now able to manage his tasks pretty well on his own. (And this is why our list has pictures to accompany each task.)
So without further ado, here are our lists! (Free download for you included down at the bottom!)
Each day, they have 5 tasks to complete. Cleaning their room and the daily chore don’t usually take more than a few minutes. Creativity, outside, and reading times are a little different each day and for each child. We shoot for 15 minutes at least, but for Ezra, he may spend as much as an hour or more reading or being creative. And he loves being outside, so that’s never a battle. As long as I can tell he’s making an effort to be creative (legos, coloring, etc.), or to read, then whatever time he wants to put into the task is good by me.
When Ezra was younger, we used to set a timer for these tasks and that worked well for him!
We also have a new guideline this summer that screen time can start after lunch and has to be completed before 6:00 p.m., but otherwise, they can split up their time however they want. We’re starting with Ezra earning 3 hours each day and Henry earning 2 hours. We may adjust this as time goes on, but during the summer, I try to be a little more relaxed with how much they are able to earn.
And because it’s a privilege, they can also lose screen time as a consequence to the choices they make throughout the day.
What can I say? Mean Mom.
If this above download doesn’t work for your family, I would encourage you to use this as a starting point and create your own!
Now tell me, are you a mean mom, too?