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The Importance of Filling a Behaviour Chart

behaviour chart"But there's not enough time for the kids to complete their behavior charts..."

Have you ever run into this problem? Maybe you have a chart for your child that takes 5 repetitions to complete the chart. But by the end of the day, the chart still isn't filled because they didn't repeat the behavior enough times. Of course you can start fresh the next day with a new behavior chart - But here's the thing...

It's REALLY important (especially in the beginning) that the chart gets filled all the way up. Your child NEEDS to feel that sense of immediate success. And as the adult in the situation, you have more control over this than you might think.

Yes, it's the child's decision as to whether they do the new behavior or not... But YOU need to be on the child's side and help them fill their chart by giving them LOTS of opportunities to perform the new behavior.

This is one of the reasons I don't recommend that people start out with chore charts. You can only "take out the garbage" once every few days... And you can only "make your bed" once before school... So when there are actions like that on the chart, there's not enough opportunities to do it.

You need to pick behaviors to work on that can happen A LOT. Things like:

At home:

  • Use your regular voice.
  • Put toys away after you use them.
  • Play quietly with your brother.

At school:

  • Raise your hand before speaking.
  • Stay seated during lessons.
  • Walk in the hallway.

Those are behaviors that a child would have many opportunities to do during a day or even an afternoon. So your job as the parent or teacher is to CATCH THEM doing the new behavior. The more you catch your children doing the new positive behavior, the more attention you'll be putting on it. 

This means your child will be thinking about it more and then doing the new behavior more ... And THAT means that your child will get to mark his chart and feel that sense of accomplishment. Ta-da!

So if you're worried that there isn't enough time for your child or student to fill his chart... Make sure the behavior you're working on is one that WILL allow for it to happen a lot during the time that you're with your child or student.

And make sure to CATCH THEM doing the new behavior and praising them for it so they can mark the chart and fill it all the way up.