9 days and the kid finally caved! I am still in complete shock that I got my little monster to eat roasted sweet potato fries and for him to tell me that he likes them. It was a long battle and I'm glad I held my ground and showed a bit of tough love.
So I introduced a reward chart for my son in addition to the naughty box and he totally responded to it. It's amazing that such a simple concept is so effective and that he actually listened and understood how it worked. So here was our game plan:
1. Because we had so many toys I ended up having to take away categories of toys (ie tracks, ipads, all trains, etc) in order to get the point across. He really didn't notice at first or let it show that he was bothered as there were plenty of others to distract him from. Getting the bigger clear box did help since it was pretty effective being able to look in there and see what he was missing out on. So every time he refused to try a veg toys would go in the naughty box. When he does try a veg he gets to take one toy back out so we've still got our work cut out for us.
2. Making a chart of the good boy things he should be doing everyday. I was told to put lots of actions on the chart and not just make it about the vegetables. He gets rewarded every time he does a good thing. With lots of actions it will be more likely to succeed at this and have a feeling of accomplishment. Since he can't read I drew simple images of the actions so he can fully understand.
3. I made him a reward chart that he would really respond to. The kid is completely obsessed with monorails and since we are taking a trip to Disney World soon I incorporated a Disney theme into the chart. Every time he does something nice he gets to put a monorail onto the chart and when the monorail reaches the castle then he gets a big prize. Which I have just been told will be a Captain America action figure. The trick is to make this really exciting and something he will be excited about.
Believe me it was tough to get him to try that one bite of veg and to get to a point where the monorails actually stayed on the chart. He was pretty much a nightmare child the whole weekend. Not so many meltdowns but just flat out ignoring anything I was saying and showing complete disrespect. Somehow we ended up with 5 on there today which is a real feat and I'm so proud of the little guy! What actually really hit him hard was taking the monorails off the chart and not confiscating the toys. I'm sure we will hit some more downs before getting all 10 monorails but I feel much more confident about what to do and that this will actually work!
The beauty of this chart is that it can work for so many behaviors and great that a child can feel proud of good behavior. You should have seen how excited he was when ate his veggies, got to take one toy out of the naughty box and to put that well deserved monorail up. Makes the past 9 days totally worth it!