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Sticker Rewards Method of Parenting ? The Real Reason to Stop Them Immediately

If you are a parent, you would have heard about the sticker rewarding. It has become a widely used and popularly known aid for rewarding children, especially in the US, which is now slowly spreading in India too.


Sticker Reward Parenting is the system of rewarding the child with a sticker for doing a chore like placing the toys in their right places, finishing a meal and so on.

Even in UK, the sticker chart rewarding is seen used in a famous reality show ?Super nanny UK? where the nanny helps parents discipline difficult children and uses a sticker chart to reward the kids.

Stickers – What They Mean To Your Child

While any kind of reward (favourite food, drink, toys etc.) can be used, sticker chart is the most commonly used mainly because it is cheap and gets the job done. Sticker charts were used by kids for their projects and to personalise their stuff, however now a days, it is being used as much by parents too.

Normally, a rule is set where when the child collects so many stickers, he is given a bigger reward like a toy. Children by nature have the tendency to collect and safeguard things that is precious to them.

Collecting stickers gives assured gifts that they feel are huge, and thus motivates the child to do the chore. In fact it works well in children who need to be persuaded to do even the smallest of the chores and those who throw a tantrum to even put on their shoes.

However the sticker method does not always work as it does in the beginning, the reasons for which are discussed here.

Why the Sticker Method Is Not Effective – Always


This sort of sticker rewards though seem to be effective in the short run, fail to do so in the long run. This is mainly because the child gets demotivated with time. More often, you will have to change the reward as they get bored with it.

Studies show that children, later in life, do not develop the responsibility to help others and do things without expecting a reward. The study suggests parents to rethink the long term psychological effects of sticker rewarding on their children.

Your child may become so much used to rewards that he would move a stone without a reward, now doesn?t that mean trouble when he is older and working?

Effect on the Parent Child Relationship


The sticker rewards method of Parenting sometimes affects the parent ?child relationship and children, when the start looking at their parents in a different perspective, like an ATM machine which gives star stickers and rewards every time he does a work.

In some cases, the table turns the other way where the children end up manipulating parents through the sticker rewarding.

They start expecting stickers for things that they were doing on their own. Moreover, there are cases where the child refuses to do any more chores because he is no longer interested in those very stickers. It in fact gives them a chance to pass on the sticker and say no to the chore. In this case, you will not have a say as the rules have been set by you ? Do the chore and get a sticker, Don?t do and you will not get a sticker.

Studies also show that this method shapes children into adults that become non-willing to participate or perform a task without the potential for reward. Offices and even teachers use points system for rewarding. While points are translated into more money for working people and recognition for students, it is similar to the sticker reward system.

Well, your child needs to understand his responsibility and chores are good for self. Parenting is the toughest job; however it is this very parenting that is going to shape the future of your child who has been brought to the world by you.

It?s your responsibility to introduce the best of the world to him and teach what is important in life and what is not.

Dr Menaka Bharathi
Dr Menaka Bharathi
Dr Menaka Bharathi aka Simple Indian Mom is an Agricultural Microbiologist and helps moms to keep their family and kids naturally healthy both mentally and physically.
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