We got a simple little alarm clock to put in the living room near the front door. Before either of my teenagers goes out in the evening, we make sure it's set to match the cell phone time, and that the alarm is set for the time I want them home. It's the teenager's responsibility to turn off the alarm before it sounds.
This way, there's no confusion about whether a child was home on time or not, whether being on the porch "counts", etc. Either they're inside and turn the alarm off, or it makes a noise and they're late. If they were to call and need a legitimate time extension, then I could reset the clock for them.
For the record, they've not been late even once with this in place. It's a charm!
Source: A friend of mine told me his mother did this years ago, and he liked the simplicity as a teen.
By Sterghe from Pennsylvania
Wow! NOW you tell me after all 9 of our combined children are grown!
I wasn't a fan of this as a teen but it was great when I became a mom. My mother put the alarm clock inside her bedroom door. It works!
To go one step further, I told my daughter that if she was 1 minute late without a call to me, then she would lose her car keys for one day. Each time she was late, the penalty doubled. She has been late only twice. She is now 19 and she knows what a deadline means.
Several people have told me that one minute late is pretty harsh. When I explained that she has a cell phone and it has happened only twice in 3 1/2 years, they see my point. We have no arguing or whining. All my rules are very clear upfront and the penalties are very clear too.
I had a sign on my refrigerator that stated: House Rules - In by 10, out by 18.
I wish I had thought about this when my girls were teens. I wouldn't have had so many "sleepless" nights. Going to tell my daughters about this one :) Thanks!
Wow. I have an 18 year old that is always late. I love this idea. Thank you very very much.
She just waits..ha
What a great idea. I'll have to pass that one on for "grandkid" use. If my daughter was late, every minute was times 6 minutes. 10 minutes late she was in an hour earlier the rest of the week. Worked great for her!
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