On Monday I declared it Break The Rules Week. (If you are wondering why, the argument on why breaking the rules is a good developmental tool for kids is posted here.) I also promised you some inspiration for what kinds of rules you might break throughout the week. (Have you broken any yet? Share your stories in the comment section, if you have.)
How to Break the Rules
First of all, you need to decide what rules you have. This was actually kind of a tough one for me. There are rules all over the place. Social norms, cultural norms, gender norms, family norms, family rules, and more. But what rules do we have that feel like “rules” and can actually be broken? Safely.
I vote we smash rules of all forms and varieties when we tackle this challenge. And that could look like one or all of these:
- Putting your baby girl in a blue sleeper. (No need to leave the babies out of this challenge.)
- Let your little boy try out pigtails.
- Let the kids make a fort in the main room using the bedding off their beds and the couch cushions and the flashlights and the… and let them leave it there. All day.
- Jump on the beds!
- Pig out.
- Watch too much television.
- Instead of cleaning bedrooms before bed, make a bigger mess!
- Draw on the sidewalks. (Some communities have actually made this illegal!! Try Googling it. It’s shocking!)
- Talk with your mouth full of food.
- Play the music too loud.
- Indoor waterfight.
- Blow bubbles in the living room.
- Eat Jell-O powder.
- Walk on the furniture.
- Let the kids romp through the shredded paper before you take it to the recycle depot.
- Players choice–what rule do your kids want to break? How about you? What do you want to do?
Sounds like an interesting day, doesn’t it?
The biggest thing, I think, about breaking the rules is this: if the kids break a rule, it shouldn’t become more work for you. If the kids are responsible for cleaning their rooms and they decide not to make their bed or clean their rooms for Breaking a Rule, it shouldn’t mean that you have to run in there and clean it for them. That’s half the thing. If they break the run in the house rule and accidentally smash something–they have to fix it.
It’s not a scott free day. There are still real life consequences.
Stay tuned. On Friday I’m going to share one big rule kids love to break along with a million fun ways to do it! (Okay, maybe not a million.)
How about you? Have you and your kids broken any rules this week? Give it a shot and report back in the comment section below.