"Mom (or Kelli depending on the tattler), Emma's standing in the middle of the bedroom looking at my toy."
"Mom, Braydon said we have to go to bed later."
"Mom, Hannah won't look at me when I talk to her."
"Moooom, Josh touched my toy when I left it on the floor for ten minutes."
"Mooooooooooom! Eric said that my shirt is red and it's orange, so he's LYING!"
"Mom. Morgan is making faces at me!"
We've tried everything. Earlier in the year we tried sending every child in the house to time out when someone tattles. That was lots of fun when we had friends over. But their parents didn't mind since we got the idea from them. Boy were those boys pissed when they realized that was the rule here too. :) But we had to abandon that when they started tattling just so the sibling they were mad at had to go to time out. They were willing to stand there too just to screw with the others.
After that we moved on to the I don't care response. But I don't care is pretty harsh so we went another way. When child A tattled on child B, the punishment was that child A had to go give child B a hug and a kiss. Of course that didn't work. They giggled at that, and then used it as a way to make their sibling hug them when they weren't in the mood.
So I'm not sure what the next attempt will be.
Maybe the tattles will stop when they find me in the fetal position in the corner mumbling and ripping my hair out.
I doubt it though, they'd probably just go tattle on me to Alex.
Thanks for reading! Feel free to share your ideas!