The Key to Success Using Daily Charts: As Moms We All Have the Same Goals!

Having a child with Autism and ADHD does not come with an instruction manual.  We have been to every type of therapist and physician imaginable to try and learn and give us as many ideas or the secret key to success. 

How do you transition without a meltdown?  How do you get him to try any type of new food?  How do you stop negative behaviors without punishing and yelling?  After visits with a behavioral psychologist, sleep psychologist, developmental pediatrician, occupational and speech therapists, this is where we have landed with all the information overload given by doing daily charts.

What does our daily chart look like?

We have so many different priorities that we want to make sure we are looking at each day and in order for us all to be on the same page, our minds focusing on the same goal, we need to have something that we are all looking at and referencing.  A daily organizational, reward chart. 

Let me lead by saying, this is for positive enforcement ONLY.  There are never any points taken away or consequences for not completing an item.  We write out our priorities for the day and as we check our boxes, our kiddo gets to earn points. 

Our kiddo has feeding concerns on top of everything else so we have put that on the chart as well.  Essentially, this is our food journal too.  It is our one stop record keeping for the day.  We write what he eats, completes for school, if he tries something new, if he has a great, unprompted, positive behavior, and even chores.  We include anything else we want to include on here each day. 

At the end of the day, we add up the points and add it to our “points bank.”  We take a picture of it and “file” it away in my tracking folder in my phone.  I always have my phone on me so it is a great reference when your therapists or physicians asks you questions about progression.  Once we get to the goal (whatever goal that may be), our kiddo gets his reward.  Lately he has been obsessed with Nintendo, so we crank up the goal point value for a new game.

You can also put on the chart if you want to remove a negative behavior but reinforce in a positive way.  For example, our kiddo loves to squeeze for sensory input.  The problem is when he tries to squeeze his 3-year-old siblings hair and back of the neck.  Obviously, this is a safety concern.  We put on the chart- squeezing a ball or stuffed animal, with check boxes. 

We started with every hour setting a timer and have him squeeze the appropriate item and check the box, each successful squeeze not on his sister is reinforced.  As we continued with this practice, we then spaced the timer out, 1.5 hours, then 2 hours and so on.  We reinforce and say this is a great thing to squeeze or we squeeze these squishy things not people, that may hurt them without you meaning to.  We are happy to report, our son doesn’t squeeze our 3-year-old anymore like that and we do not need to remind him either! 

Adapting as our kids grow.  This will slowly transition into an allowance as he grows with a different point system of course, this could get rather expensive!  Also, your child does not need to have autism to utilize such a chart.  This is great for ANY family trying to juggle the 9 million things happening in the day.  Everyone has different priorities, and no one is a mind reader.  Being open and transparent on what is needing to be completed for the day makes the day go much more smoothly.  We have also included positive things to be excited about, for example, birthdays, extra curriculars, holidays, trips, etc.  It gives them an optimistic outlook and an entire board of positivity to work at and strive for!

What you need to make a daily chart yourself:

We started with writing on post its.  Every single day to play around with how we were going to set up the board.

Now we have transitioned to a dry erase board. We set it up in a common area where everyone can see and are reminded frequently of what we are working on for the day or most proud of with our behaviors and accomplishments.

Take a good look at your child’s priorities for the day.  You could even have two or three boards for multiple children.

The Adventures To Me

Teach your Kids about integrity and values.  This beautifully illustrated book empowers kids to be nice and kind human beings.  ‘The Adventures To Me ’ is an endearing story of a little elephant on a journey to becoming the best version of “me”.

Equipped with nothing other than a colorful scooter, a backpack, and a map, the little elephant starts their “Adventures to Me”.  Along the way, meets new friends of all different backgrounds as encounters challenges, has to make choices, and learns lessons along the way.

The road to discovering the best version of “me” is paved with lessons about confidence, truthfulness, resilience and strength, respect, kindness, responsibility, accepting differences, using what you have, dreaming big, setting goals, and looking ahead towards the future with a positive mindset.

For the little elephant, the journey of life is full of a wealth of possibilities –– ready to embark on a beautiful journey alongside our elephant friend?

Learn about the choices we all make to be good people and explore the great “Adventures To Me”!

Enjoy every minute being a mom and continue to inspire your kids!