DIY Treasure Charts

I am all about positive reinforcement and rewards at our house—it really helps my kiddos to behave or do things I ask—and it makes me feel good to get them excited about doing good things. I used to teach 1st grade and loved using these kind of incentives. (I even get a little excited when they earn a sticker:)

After Kirsten’s Great Post about incentives, I wanted to try the DIY Treasure Charts.

First, I made these charts in Word. I wanted these to be cute, but I didn’t want to spend the time digiscrapping these, since we just toss them out when they are full. So I just made a simple template in Word with their name on it. (You can download the chart template below.)

Next, I got a Treasure Chest looking box. (Similar ones can be found at most craft stores)-You can even decorate a box with your kids, or use a plastic tote. Anything would work.

I then filled the box with some little goodies that my kiddos love. I put fruit snacks and treats that they normally can’t have in the treasure box as well.

SO…in order to earn a trip to the treasure box, they have to earn five stickers. 5 is a good amount for 3 year olds (so they won’t lose interest), but you may want to have your older children earn 10 or 20 before a trip to the treasure box. I like using stickers, because it is a reward in itself, they love being able to choose their sticker and put it on their chart all by themselves.
I hang the charts on the inside of my pantry door in the kitchen and used a sheet protector to hang the stickers above. I need these charts and stickers to be easily accessible during the day for this to work.
They earn stickers for waking up dry, helping me, cleaning up, going somewhere without mom (separation anxiety has not been fun), being good on an outing, and other little good deeds. We’ve already been through a few charts and my little ones are still interested in, and loving our treasure box.
Side note…Abby did not earn any stickers yesterday, instead she decided to paint the downstairs wall…good old three year olds:)
Here is the TREASURE CHART Word file if you would like to download it. Just click on the word treasure chart and it will direct you to the download link. You can open it up, change the name to your child’s name, print it on bright colored cardstock and hang it up!
What other incentive ideas work for your kids?

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  1. We do something similar. We have magnetic nickles. Whenever the kids earn a nickle, they put it up on the board (or, you know, fridge). Then, when they get 5, they can trade it in for a quarter, which goes in the little gumball machine. They never seem to tire of gumballs.

  2. That is such a GREAT idea!! I recently found a fun, little trunk at goodwill that would be PERFECT for this!!! I will have to try it for sure. Thanks for sharing the idea!

  3. I love this idea. I have tried ‘reward charts’ before–but you have inspired me to start it up again! Where did you get that chest from??

    PS: So Abby painted your downstairs huh….well my naughty Tanner took a black ink pen to my mom’s $2000 leather sofa yesterday. Yep its pretty much ruined. Of course he does this 9 days before we move right?? I need to see you again before we go. Love ya 🙂

  4. i really like this idea and will adapt it in our household. i am tired of yealing at my kids to stop doing something i don’t want them to do, i.e. hurt each other or be mean to each other. maybe this might helpd teach them to be nice to each other. thanks for your great ideas!

  5. Great idea! My daughter isn’t 3 until September and I’m not sure if she’d get the concept yet, but I’m going to give it a whirl. How much past 3 is your 3 year old?

  6. Thanks everyone! These charts and the treasure box really has worked. My kiddos are now 3 1/2 and will be 4 this fall. 3 has sure thrown us for a loop-but they are a lot of fun! And thanks for the great magnetic nickel idea:)

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