Drinking Reward Chart

For a child who's experiencing bowel or bladder problems, 8 drinks a day is ideal. Use this chart to plan when the child should have their drinks.

Advice for parents and children using drinking charts

  1. We all need to consume at least 6 – 8 drinks every day. For anyone who’s experiencing bladder or bowel problems, 8 drinks a day is ideal.
  2. Use the chart above to plan when the child should aim to have their drinks. Please fill in the times that suit your child e.g. ‘on waking’, ‘after breakfast’ rather than having to go by the clock. This will help them get in the habit of drinking at regular points in the day.
  3. Make sure the drinks are spread evenly across each day and the majority are consumed by the time they are home from school. For instance, 2 drinks before school, 3 at school and 3 during the evening.
  4. Make the drinks at school easier to manage by using a 750ml bottle – mark it off in thirds and encourage the child to drink 1/3 at break time, 1/3 at lunchtime and the rest during the afternoon. Talk to the child’s class teacher and explain that it is essential for them to have regular drinks. If they are not supportive signpost them to ERIC's Help at school guidance.
  5. If the child has problems staying dry at night, make sure they just have a small cup if they’re thirsty an hour before bed. No more after that till morning.
  6. Encourage the child to drink the whole drink straight away. If they can’t manage a full cup to start with, just give them a quarter or half, and gradually increase the amount as they get used to it.
  7. When the child finishes a drink, they can put a tick or a smiley face or a sticker in the relevant box on the chart.
  8. Try to build on the charts to increase better drinking habits long term. For instance, agree with the child how many stickers on the chart they are aiming for each week. Make it achievable; getting a full chart of 56 stickers may be a bit daunting, especially if they are not used to drinking regularly. If they achieve the agreed target, reward them with an appropriate treat. Consider offering a bigger reward if they keep up the good work over a month! See ERIC's Advice for children with daytime bladder problems and ERIC’s Advice for children with constipation for more information.
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