Typically Jake''s not allowed computer time before school, but he's been getting up and sneaking downstairs before I wake up. Today, he snuck down, wrote up two sticky notes stating: "I did all my homework" and "I'll be playing here on computer while waiting for mommy to get up".
One sticking point, he stuck the notes to the kitchen table, downstairs!!! So when I didn't get up within an hour, he came and stuck the post-it's to ME in my bed!
I reinforced his independence for doing the homework independently and he was quite happy with himself, but also reminded him of the standard computers rules which he never heard. With his chest pumped up like a rooster, he took his independence to another level a few moments later, when I asked him to help me with the garbage.
He pulled on his "workerman's" shirt given to him by the DOT guys and took his empty garbage bag the stairs. (incidentally he keeps his 'worker shirt' in the kitchen in case I ever ask him to do anything he puts it on!) Pretty soon, screams travel down the stairs. He's thrashing down the stairs like an elephant, and crying.
He promptly ripped off his workerman's shirt and plopped his shaking body into the chair for breakfast. He was too upset to even tell me what happened. I went to look upstairs and discover all the upstairs garbage cans heaping-full and lined up in the hall. The bag crumpled up and one of the cans dumped nearby. He totally missed.
That one little mistake reduced our budding independent worker's ego to the size of a smashed soda can! As much as I hated to pick up every piece of bathroom trash piece-by-piece while cooking breakfast and making lunch, it hurt me more to see how devastated he was from a simple mistake.
I reinforced him again for being independent and we talked about garbage men. I asked him if he thought real garbage men cried and screamed when they dropped a piece of garbage in the road? He answered no, and we began play-acting.
Dancing around the kitchen screaming about a dropped napkin on the floor! Laughing and yelling. "Oh no I dropped a napkin -- oooohhhh NNNNOOO!"
Then daddy came downstairs. He saw what happened upstairs... and immediately said, "What do you think real garbage men do when they drop garbage?"
Let the dancing and screaming begin again!
What a morning. Whew.