The rules are ultimately up to you as a parent. However, through trial and error we have come up with some recommended guidelines:
1. What is the exchange rate?
We have found that the formula of 1/2 hour of reading = 1 hour of video or game time is the fairest. The reason for twice the video time is becasue 1/2 hour on a game system is next to nothing. A child may not even be able to finish 1 game in a 1/2 hour. We want this to be fair and not a punishment.
2. There is no credit. The child should read BEFORE they play the game system, not the other way around.
3. The child may “bank” hours they have read to earn a longer session of gaming.
4. Reading homework does count. Give your child one more incentive to turn in their assignments.
5. When they get tired of one computer game or game system, they will want a different form. Make the same deal for every, “next big thing”.
6. Use the readforxbox system year round. Data shows most kids are losing ground in the summer and on extended vacations. Your child will gain ground while others are losing ground.
7. Is it only xbox that we are talking about? No! Use the system for xbox, Playstation, DS, and any other game system. Any game on a smart phone or similar device also counts. Be creative.
8. What if I don’t have a game system? Make a deal before you buy your child an expensive item such as an ipod or smartphone. You will buy the item if they agree to read 3 times per week. You and I know you’re going to buy it anyway, why not make it work for you and your child?