Stickers Are Their Own Reward

August 4th, 2010

Why didn’t I think of it sooner? The answer to all my recent morning clothing battles with Miss Mouse lay before me all along. I just didn’t realize it.

But let me back up.

For some reason, Miss Mouse has been boycotting clothing in the mornings. She doesn’t want to take her pajamas off. Then she doesn’t want to put her clothes on. And let me tell you, it’s hard to force-dress a toddler. Seriously. They make it very difficult and I feel like a horrible person when I have to pin her down in order to yank a t-shirt over her head. It’s not pleasant for anyone. Less so because it happens at six o’clock in the morning and makes me late for work.

This morning, though, I hit upon the answer. At least for now. Stickers. Wonderful, magical, super-cheap stickers. Miss Mouse is wild about stickers. She spends endless time carefully transferring them from her arms to her fingers to her paper and back again (when she can peel them off).

I recently stocked up on a bunch of Teacher Reward Stickers. They were a dollar for about 350 stickers. What’s not to love? Miss Mouse doesn’t know what they say, but she does know there are flowers and stars and fish on them, and that’s all that matters.

In any case, this morning, as we headed upstairs to get ready for school, I got her attention and announced that, when she was dressed, I had a sticker for her. I held the sticker sheet in my hand so she knew this was for real, but kept it out of reach while diapering and clothing the wee thing.

And she was great! Still a little hesitation about removing her pajama top, but one sticker reminder was all it took. Once she was dressed, I presented her with a flower sticker and she was ecstatic. She stuck it to her shirt and kept petting it. She still had it on when we got to school and she immediately ran to her teacher to show off her prize.

Who knows how long this tactic will last, but for now I’m feeling pretty clever!!

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