SAN DIEGO – The M.O.M. Method (Manage and Organize Myself) has launched nationwide with the first comprehensive, Web-based parenting tool to combat “helicopter parenting” with a powerful combination of time and task management tools for kids and a practical step-by-step parenting guide for moms and dads. The program is designed to teach kids (ages six to 12) the skills necessary to become more self-reliant, while removing parents from the role of task-master.
Researchers have linked strong time management skills in kids with success later in life, including both college and career. While knowing how to effectively manage one’s time is a critical life skill, it’s not something children are born with. It must be taught in a conscious and deliberate way and reinforced through daily repetition to form good habits. The M.O.M. Method provides the structure and tools to do just that, so that kids start to understand exactly how much time routine tasks take so they can learn to plan accordingly. This allows everything—from getting ready for school to completing homework and chores—to go much more smoothly for the whole family.
Additionally, The M.O.M. Method goes beyond the basic chore chart or checklist to teach kids about task management in a more meaningful way. New skills are honed in three progressive stages, with kids mastering one set of skills before moving onto the next. Being able to successfully—and independently—plan for the short and long term benefits kids at home, school and in all other aspects of their lives. In turn, kids are much better prepared for the more rigorous demands of the “Real World.”
Antidote to Helicopter Parenting
At its core, The M.O.M. Method is designed to shift the power of decision-making, along with its inherent responsibility and subsequent accomplishment, from the parent to the child. It’s not about telling kids—or even parents—what to do. It’s about kids and parents working toward a common goal of helping kids achieve more independence and self-reliance so that they ultimately learn the life skills they need to be happy, successful adults.
We are learning that effective time and task management skills are critically important from a psychological standpoint. A 2013 study in the Journal of Child and Family Studies found that college students whose parents were described as “helicopter parents” reported higher levels of depression and use of antidepressant medications.
“Students who reported having over-controlling parents reported significantly higher levels of depression and less satisfaction with life…The negative effects of helicopter parenting on college students’ well-being were largely explained by the perceived violation of students’ basic psychological needs for autonomy and competence.”
In other words, as a result of over-involvement by their parents, these young adults were psychological ill-equipped to manage the responsibilities and stressors of their daily lives without parental intervention.
“While it is well-intentioned, we now understand that helicopter parenting can have detrimental long-term effects as kids enter adulthood without knowing how to think or do things for themselves,” said Stephanie Katleman, founder of The M.O.M. Method. “When we constantly micro-manage and badger kids to get things done, not only are we creating a negative family dynamic, but we are also robbing our kids of the opportunity to learn, grow and be accountable for themselves.”
Hence, the need for a system for teaching kids how to manage and organize themselves: The M.O.M. Method.
How It Began
The M.O.M. Method was created as a solution to the real-life challenges Katleman was having as a working single-mom. Tired of feeling exhausted, constantly behind schedule and generally overwhelmed by the seemingly endless job of keeping her young son on task with his daily chores, assignments and activities, Katleman was at her wit’s end. Family life had become a constant cycle of micro-managing, nagging and arguing, and it simply wasn’t working for either of them.
Katleman found a hodgepodge of parenting resources available, but nothing that provided a complete solution to the issues her family was facing. There were books aimed at teaching adults to be better parents, but no tools to help parents implement what they’d learned. Additionally, there were downloadable charts that provided good visual aids, but that offered no real parenting guidance. Neither was effective on its own.
Finally, after three years of research and development, consultation with parenting experts, and product beta testing with hundreds of families in regional test markets, Katleman has launched The M.O.M. Method nationwide, allowing families to immediately implement a new, effective structure in kids’ lives.
Designed as a recipe for good, positive parenting, the comprehensive program includes:
Time Management—The M.O.M. Method takes the family refrigerator calendar and kid’s chores chart to an entirely new level by providing responsibilities within the context of time—teaching kids to gauge and manage time for all the things they do
Task Management—Unique schedules and parenting methodology to help children to understand what they are responsible for doing and when—from personal care/hygiene to homework to household chores
Calendaring—Weekly and monthly calendars designed just for kids, serving as a road map and visual reminder so kids know what to expect each day so they are totally prepared and ready for action
Point System—An engaging point system to motivate children and help them understand the connection between their effort and the positive results it produces
Reporting—Insightful reports that enable parents to see trends in task performance, so they can make adjustments to their children’s schedules and responsibilities, as needed
Planning Tool—Proprietary online planning wizard that helps children learn the steps involved in short-term planning, from identifying what needs to get done to working backward and estimating time requirements
Communication Tools—Clear and concise worksheets and contracts to help parents and children work as a team to build trust and minimize power struggles
Parenting Resources—A step-by-step guide, parent forum (coming soon), blog, email tips and progress updates to support parents throughout the journey and optimize the family experience
Mobile App—A complement to our web-based program for convenient access (via iPhone/iPad) to checklists, tools and resources on the go
The M.O.M. Method is not intended to be a quick-fix, but more of a smart, steady workout routine for parenting—if you’re willing to invest the time and effort, you’ll get results. Parents are guided through a simple set-up process to customize the program for their specific goals and then offered step-by-step guidance on how to introduce the program to kids to achieve consensus and commitment to the new, streamlined family game-plan.
The M.O.M. Method is not just for moms. The same principles and strategies apply to dads, grandparents or other primary caregivers. The key is a shared commitment to long-term, sustainable change and the end goal of creating a happier family unit with more confident, self-reliant kids.
The M.O.M. Method is software-as-a-service, or SaaS, program and is currently free. Flexible membership plans, starting at $3.99 per month, will be introduced in Fall 2014.
For more information or to sign up for The M.O.M. Method, visit www.MomMethod.com. The M.O.M. Method can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn.