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Free Printable Behavior Charts for Home

a mom who uses behavior charts for home to show her kids the expectations for behavior
Reading Time: 5 minutes

Ever had those days where it feels like your kid’s distractions outnumber fall’s scattering leaves? I know the struggle. That’s why I’m sharing something that’s become a lifesaver in my practice: behavior charts. Not just any behavior charts, but free printable behavior charts you can use at home, here in this post. These aren’t your regular charts – they’re innovative, interactive, and engaging for children ages 2-10. I’ll lead you through unique ideas on using them, peppered with helpful tips that tune into every child’s unique characteristics, including neurodivergent ones. Oh, and did I mention you get a free downloadable PDF too?

Why Behavior Charts?

You’re probably wondering why all the commotion about behavior charts? Here’s your answer. Behavior charts are amazing tools for teaching children, especially neurodivergent kids, about self-management and responsibility. They offer a fun, interactive way to help your child understand what’s expected of them—and what happens when they meet or miss those expectations.

In essence, behavior charts take an abstract concept—responsibility—and make it something a child can see and understand. More importantly, they turn it into a game with rewards, and who doesn’t love a good reward? Throughout my practice, I’ve seen kids light up when they achieve their goals, and the sense of accomplishment that washes over them—it’s priceless!

Building Behavior Charts for Home

Creating these nifty behavior charts is easier than you might think. Firstly, it’s essential to choose behaviors that your child is currently learning or struggling with. If your child is working on a routine like brushing their teeth before bed, handling anger, or staying focused — fantastic, add it to the chart. Secondly, include your child in the process. Have them help choose the rewards, decorate the chart, or decide on the behaviors. This increases their commitment and makes it more fun for them.

  • Step 1: Select the Behaviors, Choose three to five behaviors your child is currently learning or struggling with and write them down.
  • Step 2: Pick the Rewards, Ask your child what rewards would motivate them. It could be extra playtime, a new toy, or a special activity.
  • Step 3: Design the Chart, You can create a simple table on your computer or draw it out by hand. Make sure to leave enough space to add stickers or checkmarks as your child progresses.
  • Step 4: Track Progress, Each day, mark off the behaviors your child successfully carried out. Review it together at the end of the day and celebrate their achievements.
  • Step 5: Reward Success, Once your child achieves a predetermined number of checkmarks or stickers, they earn their reward. Remember, it’s essential to celebrate even small successes!
a mo who is using behavior charts for home to help her kids understand good and bad actions
Read more: Free Printable Blank Behavior Charts

Navigating Common Challenges

Behavior charts aren’t magic; sometimes, they don’t work out as planned. However, that doesn’t mean you should throw in the towel. Common issues include unrealistic goals, insufficient motivation, or failure to follow through with rewards.

Combat these issues by breaking down larger tasks into small, achievable, specific, time-bound goals. Ensure the rewards are meaningful to your child, and always uphold your end of the deal when they reach their goals.

Creative Behavior Chart Ideas

Here is where the fun truly starts! While a simple sticker chart works wonders, the sky is truly the limit for creativity. How about a “path to the treasure” chart where every step taken on the path – that is to say, every good behavior – gets your kid closer to the treasure, aka the reward! Or perhaps a “build your own superhero” chart where each good behavior earns a new part to add to their superhero would be a runaway hit with your child. The key is to build a chart that speaks to your kid’s interests.

Similarly, for children with special needs or those who are more visually oriented, a picture-based chart can help them better understand and track their progress. You can use photos, clipart, or drawings to represent different tasks or behaviors. This makes the chart engaging and accessible for all kids!

behavior charts

Of course, it’s not just about constructing the chart. Consistency in using it, celebrating successes, and reassessing when things don’t work is equally essential. Remember, behavior charts are not a one-time ‘fix it’ solution but part of a journey towards nurturing responsible and self-aware learners.

Read more: Free Printable Behavior Charts for School

Free Printable Behavior Charts for Home

Now that you understand behavior charts’ what, why, and how, let’s get to the fun part — the freebies! I’ve created a set of free printable behavior charts that you can download and use at home. They’re colorful, engaging, and designed to appeal to kids ages 2-10.

Each chart comes with a set of instructions and tips for use. But remember, these charts are just a starting point. Feel free to adapt them to your child’s needs and family’s values.

A young child demonstrates brushing teeth on the best tablet for kids by Goally, highlighting a kid-friendly interface.

Goally | Apps That Build Behavior & Life Skills for Kids

Want to keep your child motivated while building essential behavior and life skills? Goally’s skill-building tablet is designed to celebrate small wins and help your child grow.

Our Behavior Tracker helps you reward your kiddo for specific skills, like “being kind” or “flushing the toilet.”

By setting clear expectations and rewarding their efforts, you foster a positive environment for your child to flourish in their behavioral skills journey.

The hall monitor penguin uses apps for ABA Therapy that help at home as well as in the clinic.

Final Thoughts

Behavior charts aren’t magic bullets. They won’t solve every behavior issue overnight. But, used consistently and thoughtfully, they can be a powerful tool in your parenting toolbox. They encourage positive behavior, teach responsibility, and help kids understand the connection between actions and consequences. In short, they’re a step towards raising happy, responsible kids. And isn’t that what we all want as parents?

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FAQs about Behavior Charts

1. What is a behavior chart?
A behavior chart is a visual tool that helps track a child’s behavior and encourages positive conduct. It’s like a game where kids earn rewards for good behavior, making learning fun and engaging.

2. How does a behavior chart work?
You list the desired behaviors on the chart and every time your child exhibits that behavior, they earn a star or a sticker. Accumulate enough stars, and they earn a reward, promoting repeat of the positive behavior.

3. Can behavior charts be used for neurodivergent kids?
Absolutely! Behavior charts can be customized to suit the unique needs and challenges of neurodivergent kids, making them an effective tool for behavior management.

4. What kind of behaviors can be tracked on a behavior chart?
You can track any behavior that you want to encourage in your child, from daily tasks like brushing teeth to behavioral goals like sharing toys or using polite language.

5. What should the rewards be?
Rewards should be immediate and meaningful to your child. They don’t have to be materialistic — a trip to the park or an extra bedtime story can be just as rewarding.

This post was originally published on 01/10/2023. It was updated on 03/07/2024. 

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