Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Luck of the Draw

I don't believe fair treatment is the same as equality. And even if I did, trying to treat six children exactly the same would drive me nuts! For example, we try to give welcome/appropriate gifts for Christmas and birthdays, not to spend the same amount of money on each child.

We do, however, try to share/take turns/be fair. Children, especially, have a strong sense of justice. So sometimes when a resource is scarce, we introduce randomness to keep things even.

This happens most frequently when there's not enough left of something yummy: an extra Dove bar, three pieces of cheesecake (too small to cut further), or any last portion. Sometimes chance is used to dole out the fun (first turn or order of turns) or less-fun (an extra chore that doesn't belong to anyone).

Our favored method is drawing cards. We get a deck (Bonus: it doesn't need to be complete!) and everyone who is interested (or required, in the case of less-fun) draws a card. Before beginning, we reiterate the mantra, "Ace is high, joker means draw again."

That's it! No negotiating, decision making, or remembering who got it last time. It's such a relief to have a quick, final answer that everyone knows is truly impartial and FAIR.

This means there is usually no fussing, either. Sometimes a little one cries with disappointment, but it's short-lived, and in any case that can happen whenever a little doesn't get his or her way. At our house, the very youngest draw cards just to be part of the group, even when their results don't "count".

1 comment:

Anne said...

Great idea and it might cut down on some squabbling that has picked up around the house..... Thanks for the tip!!!

Love ya!