If you have no idea where to find a printable reward chart, worry no more! There are many great free resources available to help you find the perfect one.
First, though, do you know why reward charts are so effective? Reward charts are a great way to make good behavior become second nature. By consistently rewarding your child when they do something you like, the behavior becomes ingrained and becomes natural over time. A good rule of thumb is about 4 weeks for a behavior to become part of everyday life.
Most children, at some point, behave in ways that are negative and difficult to deal with. Parents often struggle to get their children to do the right thing. By putting the focus on positive behavior and less focus on the negative, the change becomes much easier. Using a positive reward system is quite effective, and in fact, can be fun for your child. There are a few tips to keep in mind when using a printable reward chart with your child.
- For younger children, use stars or stickers as a reward for a job well-done. After a specified number of stickers (or stars), give a substantial reward.
- Keep rewards age-appropriate. For a younger child, you might want to give a small toy, a box of crayons or markers, or a small food treat as a reward. For older children, giving an extra privilege or two can be a great reward (a favorite meal, an extra hour of television, etc.)
- Be very specific. Give your child clear and concise instructions on which behavior you want to encourage. Also spell out behaviors which might keep them from receiving a reward (tantrums, not finishing dinner, etc.)
- Be consistent. If you follow-through with each attempt at good behavior, your child will become more likely to repeat patterns of good behavior, and to break cycles of bad behavior.
- Allow your child to be a part of the process. For younger children, this might mean allowing them to color the reward chart or decorate it. For an older child, he or she could make suggestions for rewards that they can earn.