I’ve tried so many different kinds of reward/discipline systems, and although some have worked for a while, this one is by far the BEST.

The sticker chart was great for Miss H for a while, but Master J has never really given two hoots about stickers, so that one was a no go for him!!  I’ve tried the naughty step too, but that only worked when they were toddlers, and to be honest I was never very good at it!!  I’ve also tried pocket money but we kept forgetting to give it to them, so that was clearly not working either.

We’re been using marble jars for a couple of years now, so I really can’t remember where I got the idea from – probably Pinterest!!  It works so well because it not only rewards good behaviour and habits but can also be used for discipline, and it encourages the kids to save.  So a win win win!!

Here’s how it works for us:

Every time the kids complete a task they can choose a marble to go into their jar.  Once they have 15 marbles in their jar they can swap them for a gold coin ($1 or a $2).  The gold coins have to stay in their jars until they have at least $10 before they are allowed to spend it.  If our kids misbehave we give them a warning and if they continue to misbehave then we just remove a marble from their jar.  We also make sure that are able to earn a gold coin at least once a week. Any longer than that and it becomes unachievable for them and they start to loose interest.

It’s AMAZING how well it works.  They absolutely HATE loosing marbles!!! They are also so competitive between each other that they’re always trying to do extra ‘good things’ to see if they can get an extra marble!!  It does make me chuckle when they have over 10 marbles in their jar and all of a sudden they want to ‘help’ me with just about everything!!  The best part is seeing how excited they get when they finally get to spend their money on whatever they want.

What you’ll need to join in:

  • Each kid needs their own marble jar.  As you can see I have used jam jars, but any jar will do.  Let them decorate their jar with stickers or paint or whatever kind of craft you can cope with (stickers was as far as I was going!).
  • You will also need a BIG marble jar to store the marbles, and of course marbles.
  • A list of tasks that are important to you and the kids.  I wrote mine down first and then got the kids to add a few.  It makes them a lot more likely to do it if they have contributed. Some examples are:  Completing homework, packing and/or unpacking school bags, making beds, brushing teeth, tidying up toys, being kind, listening, putting washing in the wash basket….. etc etc
  • Get the kids involved and watch how well it works.

Do you have a reward system in your house?  What works well for you?


14 comments on “The Marble Jar reward system for kids that works!!”

    • It really works hon!! You’ll be amazed at how all of a sudden they want to help out just to get THAT marble, lol!! I’m so excited about PB – we’ll have to look at room shares this time xxx

  1. That is such a cool idea!!! I have been looking for something like this to encourage my 4 year old to do things in a timely manner – getting ready for school takes him FOREVER!!! I was going to do stickers, but this will be a better idea as its something I can easy give or take away! Thanks for this 🙂

    Hello from #teamIBOT

    • I hope it works for you. Once they understand the concept (and the get to go shopping) you won ‘t look back. PS. My daughter takes forever to get ready for school too. She only has one speed and thats slow, hahah!! xxx

  2. We are on hiatus from the marble jar temporarily, but this is a technique that we love at our place too. We swapped to plastic jars (the fruit ones) when a particularly enthusiastic marble collector accidentally broke her jar… x

    • lol, yes I can see that being a problem. Plastic jars are probably far more sensible but I have an abundance of glass jars in our house as I have a bit of a think for them!!!! xxx

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