Positive reinforcement is a tool used by parents and teachers and caregivers to modify their children’s behavior by reinforcing desired behaviors. As an educator, learning different ways of positive reinforcements to use on children was very important. It is a great tool to motivate children, to encourage them to do their chores, brush their teeth, do their homework so on so forth. There are 2 different types of positive reinforcements. Extrinsic rewards are those rewards provided by someone else. Intrinsic rewards are the rewards a person gets from within. Both of these rewards are used for everyone. Lately I have been using a lot of positive reinforcement methods with my children to motivate and encourage them to do things on a day-to-day basis. Check out our post on the Chores and Rewards System for all aged kids
List of positive reinforcements:
1. To encourage my children to sleep in their rooms the whole night, and without them tip toeing into our room, I started a sticker chart for them. You have to set up a goal. I told them if they get 7 stickers in a row, they then can get a prize. I change-up my rewards. I have them choose what they want to do such as, take them to the yogurt shop, or treat them to their favorite restaurant or go to the park. I change it up because giving the same reward each time after a while get’s boring. Click here for: Sticker Chart or for a printable one
2. Everyday either before bedtime, or in the afternoon before their playtime, I always have them do quite time and quite time in our household is usually pick 2 books and look through the books or mommy or daddy will read to them to you. This encourages them to have a “moment” to themselves, and settle down before we transition to something else such as bed time or nap.
3. A method I use to use when I was teaching my Kindergarten class was “The Marble Jar” which was an awesome tool to use for positive behavior. This method can be used for many behaviors that you feel your child needs help with. For example, cleaning up the toy room, or your child not listening to you when you tell them to do something or not finishing their homework. All you need is a large jar and a bag of marbles. Every time your child does something good, or something positive, you add a marble (s). Every time they do something not cooperative then you take marble(s) away. Set a goal if the jar fills up they then get a reward, or if the jar has a certain amount they get an award.
4. A verbal positive reinforcement is always the natural easiest way. We sometimes forget that “everyone needs a pat on the back”, when something is accomplished or done well. Children and we as adults need that as well! Lately I have been verbally telling my children that “they did an awesome job cleaning up their play room,” or saying “Thank You” for listening to me when I told them to do something”, so on so forth. Just a “Thank You”, or “Good Job”, encourages people and makes them feel good and it does the same to children as well.
5. Have your child choose what kind of reward they would like when they accomplish something. Make a chart and have them tick off whichever one they would like so you can alternate the rewards plus it is not repetitive. Click here for an example of a chart
What methods or tools do you use with your children for positive reinforcement?