31 Days :: A Discipline Tool

Discipline your son, and he will give you peace; he will bring delight to your soul. Proverbs 29:17

This week we have prayerfully considered what the Lord would have for our new Crenshaw Family Rules. All together, the four rules are…

1. Obey Quickly and Completely
Children obey your parents in the Lord for this is right. Ephesians 6:1

2. Honor Each Other
Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Romans 12:10

3. Be Agreeable
Do all things without grumbling or questioning. Philippians 2:14

4. Do Hard Things
Act like men and be strong. 1 Corinthians 16:13

Have you been thinking on your family rules? If so, share with us! I want to learn from you!

I also thought it appropriate to revise an old post on our system on discipline around here. It is not foolproof and we are not always consisitant, but this is what we strive to do.

Not long ago, I sat in Brent’s grandmother’s kitchen as she told me how she (very impressively) raised five children on one system of discipline.

“The Token Board”

I could picture her homemade board as she described a simple piece of wood. Five nails. And several tokens for each child.

Mema’s system? If a child disobeyed, they removed a token. If they lost all tokens….a spankin’ from Pepaw. As simple as that.

She said she used it for years and it worked well.

And what’s good enough for Mema is good enough for me. So off to work I went.


I bought these little boards at A.C.Moore. I think they cost $1.79. It took me all of 10 minutes to get my paint supplies out and give them a few strokes.

I had to nail little metal hangers on the back (not pictured). We had some from old picture frames, but you can buy them at Lowe’s or maybe even Wal-Mart.


These are just basic nails. I did spray paint them black, but you don’t have to do that. The tokens came from Staples. They are called “Key Tags” for your shopping knowledge.

I bought a paint pen from A.C. Moore. I was going to use a Sharpie, but it just didn’t look right. This is when I wish my handwriting had graduated from middle school. But oh well. It looks fine.


Here’s our system:
*Each child starts the week with five tokens.

*Each token is worth 50 cents.

*At the end of the week, they are rewarded for each token kept.

The reason we did it this way is because they want a little “treat” when we go to Target or Wal-mart or Weigel’s. This gives them the opportunity to buy their own snacks with their own money. The money is theirs to spend how they wish. But you could choose whatever would bless your kiddos the most. Ice Cream on Saturday night. An extra hour of Wii. Etc…

Removing Tokens:
* When a family rule is broken, they remove a token and place it on the spare nail.

*If all five tokens are lost, they receive a spanking from Daddy.

Earning tokens back:
*Sometimes I will “catch them” doing something above and beyond (taking initiative, helping out without being asked, etc) and I will give them a token as a special reward. However, earning Tokens back is not something we do everyday.

So far it has worked great. Of course there are always gray areas. The other day, Grant’s behavior was far beyond the token board. He did receive a spanking. Of course he cried “Can’t I just loose a token?!” Umm no. Some things (a.k.a. hitting your brother) are more serious than a token.

I am no expert. And your opinions may vary on all of this. That’s OK. I just wanted to share. The Lord has entrusted your children to you. He will direct you on what discipline is best for your children.

Brent and I want to focus on delighting in our children first. It is so easy to focus on discipline discipline discipline. I can be very hard on my boys. 😦

The Lord delights in us. He enjoys us. His motivation for us is LOVE. He disciplines us out of a position of LOVE.

Let us as parents delight in our children. Enjoy them. And, like our Father, discipline out of LOVE.

What do you think?

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4 thoughts on “31 Days :: A Discipline Tool

  1. I loved the idea of the token board. I also appreciate your desire for it to be a tool of reward (50 cents for each token at the end of the week), and just about punishment for bad behavior. I feel like our society too often tries to use fear of punishment alone to discipline our children, when rewards can/should be a part of that work too.

  2. I like your system! It would've been helpful when my kiddos were younger! Fortunately (for now!) we don't have to discipline too often. Baby girl has had her phone taken away, which is nearly the end of the world! But mostly, we are able to delight in them right now. In less than two weeks, I will have a teenager! From what I hear, my mom adventure is only beginning… 🙂

  3. I really agree with your discipline method and I love that you made the focus be on disciplining in love. This is something I struggle with, because I have struggled with anxiety and depression which often make me react out of my emotions. I'm learning to take a step back and focus on disciplining in love, in teaching my children to do right and WHY to do right. Even at a young age, I know they can still learn about obeying as to the Lord, especially if I model it. Thank you for sharing – once again, your post has encouraged and convicted me.

  4. What a great system! I love it for it's simplicity! A friend of mine shared with me her family rules, and I've kind of adopted them for my family. They are: Be Respectful, Be Obedient, Be Kind, Be Honest. So many, many things can fall under the different categories. When my boys act up, and I have to correct them, I try to remind them of the rule they chose to break. It's definitely helped!

I means so much to hear from you!

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