(I made these using PicMonkey, super easy folks)
Each "Tech Ticket" is worth 30 minutes of technology time: television, Ipod, computer, Wii, etc. For now the boys will get 3 tickets at the beginning of each day. They turn in one ticket for every 30 minutes of media they choose to enjoy. They have the opportunity to earn extra tickets if they get a "Yay!" stick that offers that reward. They can also lose a ticket if they pull an "Oy!" stick that has that consequence.
I bought these cheap ($1) wooden boxes at Michael's. I painted them red.
I wanted a place for the boys to turn in their tickets and I remembered seeing how people use shadow boxes to keep movie or concert stubs. I found this shadow box on sale and it has a small slit already cut at the top, the perfect size for the boys to slide in their tickets.
I jazzed up the background with some scrapbook paper and shiny stickers.
Summer doesn't officially start for a couple more weeks but I decided to start our new "Tech Ticket" system this past weekend since it was a long weekend. I figured we could give it a trial run and see how it worked. As expected Caleb blew through his tech tickets by noon each day and then complained the rest of the day because he couldn't watch anymore television. Benjamin usually had one or 2 tickets left at the end of the day. When that happens, I'll let the boys carry their tickets over to the next day...I doubt this will ever happen with Caleb.
There are exceptions when the boys won't be required to turn in a ticket for media time. Freebies will include a family movie night or any program that we watch together as a family.
We've only been at this for a few days but it really is working well. I think it helps Caleb to see exactly how many tickets he has and eventually he will learn (maybe) to spread them out over the day so he doesn't run out by lunch time! I created this system as much for myself as I did for the boys. This holds me accountable as well. I'm certainly guilty of feeding Caleb's Netflix addiction. These tickets will help me keep track of their couch potato time and I can always reward them with an extra "Tech Ticket" for good behavior....or for when I just need 30 minutes of peace! :)