Reward charts have been around for ages. Some are very specific, with categories for each thing the parent wants to coax their child to accomplish. Others are more general, with lots of squares that get filled in for anything worth rewarding.
The intent is the same, however. A reward chart helps a child to see their progress, and encourages them to work towards a goal, and gives them a reason to do the hard/boring stuff.
Here is a way to create a personalised and fun reward chart for your kids.
First you need to decide how your reward system works. Are the stickers or crossed boxes rewards in themselves? (Hint: your child won't stay interested for long if there's no enticement. I suggest a real reward will get you better results). Let's assume there is a tangible reward. What must the child do to earn the reward?
Here's an example: you want the child to clean their room without complaining. If they do it five times, they get a lolly. BUT, if they do it while complaining, they can still earn, but at a slower rate. Therefore, your rule can be that they earn two stickers for cleaning their room without complaining, or one sticker for whining and grumbling but getting the room clean. Perhaps an imperfectly clean room done without complaining might earn one sticker.
They must earn ten stickers to get the lolly.
My own reward system is housework-related for the older children:
They get three stickers for a big job done well without being asked.
They get two stickers for a big job done willingly when told to do it.
They get one sticker for a job done badly or a job done whilst grumbling or a small job done well.
One sticker can be awarded for other good behaviour, at my discretion.
For the younger children it is less rigid, and I give stickers for many varied things - flushing toilets and washing hands, asking first, using manners, playing nicely.
Once ten stickers are accumulated, they get a small prize (like a lolly or a small toy). Eight small prizes earns a large prize (like an outing or a junky dinner).
If it is at all possible, use stickers rather than marking off spaces. The child can then choose their sticker and put it in place, adding fun to the process.
So how do we put all that into a chart? Well, you could draw up a grid with ten columns and eight rows, but that's just boring. We can do better than that! Here's a chance to get all creative and awesome! Design your own reward chart, involve the kids. Just keep in mind that you need spaces for the nine (or whatever) minor stickers, and then one big sticker for each reward journey, and then you need to repeat that however many times you have decided to do it.
If they are awesome enough, once the charts are finished, you can laminate them and use them as placemats or wall decorations.
Here are the charts my kids have designed for themselves (done in MS Publisher):
When nine stickers are in a swirl, then one goes on a star!
Olivia's favourite colour is rainbow.
She's a details girl!
Yeah, Ben has a thing about trains right now. Might need to work on this one a bit.