My quest for a set of rules began a few years ago when Elle was about three years old. That was about the time when she was telling me “no” and being quite willful and disobedient. She needed to know what was expected and how to behave. And, I needed something to help me be consistent and something to refer to when disciplining her.
Just Google “family rules” and there are so many options. It seems that 90% of the images are of rules listed in really cool fonts and sizes on a chalkboard background and images that are meant more for decoration. I like a lot of these ideas but it wasn’t quite what I wanted.
I wanted something that was easy to read and simple. I did not want a “decoration” on my wall. I wanted something that was Biblically based. Then I came across this poster of family rules. It was perfect! I got out my markers and a plain white sheet of printer paper, wrote down the rules, and posted it in view of my youngster.
It was the quickest way to get a set of rules into play. If they didn’t work or I found a set of rules that I thought would work better than I would change it. Well, it’s been a couple of years now and the rules are still posted. However, it’s time for a makeover… I typed them up, all nice and neat, and I added a written verse instead of just a scripture reference. And, I want to share them with you! Click here to download Our Family Rules.
1. Love God & Love Each Other
2. Listen & Obey the 1st Time
3. Use Kind Words in a Kind Voice
4. Be Honest & Loyal
5. Have a Servant’s Heart
6. Ask Permission & Forgiveness
When disciplining the kids I like to ask them what they did wrong and what rule they need to be following. This set of rules is great because they are a little more general, you can fit a specific wrongdoing into any one of the rules. If your child is calling names, teasing, or using bad language then rule #3 can apply. If your child is refusing to do his chores or responsibilities or is not being helpful then you can use rule #5 to remind him how to act.
I recommend “assigning” a discipline for each rule. It helps me to be consistent and for my kiddos to know what to expect when they do something wrong. The type of discipline will depend on your child’s age and motivation. And the form of discipline will change as your child grows older. I really like how Doorposts.com explains what discipline looks like. Ultimately, you know your family best and what works best for you.
Please feel free to share any discipline ideas in the comments.