The twins are approaching 16 and with that age comes driving- something that my little sister likes to remind us of daily. My mind races to the responsibility that comes with being in charge of a 4,000 pound killing machine aka a car. The need for attention to detail. The quick reflexes. The freedom. The trust required. The twins seem to think that driving is a right but it’s not. Driving is a privilege that has to be earned. Just saying that they can drive when we feel they are ready isn’t something they can keep track of. We want to do something that they can see they are heading towards. That’s when I came up with the idea of responsibility coins.
Driving is a huge responsibility. We need to know that they can handle being responsible and follow the rules weather they agree with them or not.
The idea of responsibility coins is that the twins can track their progress towards earning driving lessons. They earn coins by doing things without being asked or going above and beyond for themselves or the family.
- getting a homework assignment done early
- taking Vivian, our dog, on a walk
- doing another siblings chores for them when they’re out and it’s needed
- calling and checking in
- cleaning up after themselves and others
- doing well at sporting events
- stopping an argument before it begins
- waking up early and working out
- making a meal
- doing the laundry
One of the best things about the coins is it’s an opportunity to recognize the twins good behavior. Unlike allowance it can’t be taken away- only earned. Only one coin is given for each good behavior- this way the twins can’t try to barter for them. We assigned them colors so that they can’t trade them with each other. It’s not guarantied that coins will be given but we do our best to catch them being good. In fact the plastic coins we bought even say,
I was caught being good.
The twins can learn how to drive once they earn 250 responsibility coins. Once they have passed their permit test they will need to earn another 250 to get their license. When they pass their driving test they will need another 250 to get a car. It’s a great system and a great life lesson.
Being responsible has reward.