06 September 2011

DIY: {'be a superhero' magnetic board}

I have mentioned before that we've had a rough go lately with the four year old. I love him to pieces, but that boy knows how to test the limits. And push my buttons. I am pretty structured in our routine and try to be consistent - in schedules and sleep and discipline. Not crazy or anything - we have plenty of fun - but I find it works so much better when a kid knows what the consequence will be when a certain choice is made.

It's time to get creative. I want Lute to think about the bigger picture - like if he talks back, he gets a time out, but then what? Five minutes later it may happen again and another time out. 
Until today! As of right now, he is pretty excited about this idea and so I am. We'll see how it works out.

I made this magnetic superhero board. 
{You can choose any theme you and your little one would like.}

The idea is that each day you start out with six magnets with the kid's initial on them  (that way you can differentiate between children if you have multiple using the board). 
For every good thing he does, he gets a magnet on the superhero side.
For every time out, he gets one on the bad guy side.
If, at the end of the day, he has more on the superhero side, he gets to choose a surprise from the prize bin (stickers, an extra show the next day, etc.)
Every day is a fresh start! I like that it's rewarding good and not just focusing on the negative.

Now how to make it. This is SO easy and should take less than 30 minutes once you have all your supplies. 
Here's what you need:
I got this awesome Super Man flannel online. You only need about 1/4 yard of each fabric if you're using a smaller board like I did.
The magnetic board was on sale for 4 bucks at Target this week - can't beat that!

Position your fabric to cover the top 2/3 of the board. Once you have it lined up the way you like, cut it so you have about 1/2" extra around all the edges to wrap around the back.

Now you want to glue under the bottom edge. The rest of the gluing will be on the back so you don't have any barriers between the magnets and the board, and everything looks nice and smooth.

 Flip the board over and glue down the top edge. Then fold it like you would wrapping paper and pull it tight and glue all along the sides, so the back ends up looking like this:

Next, cut your contrasting fabric as you did with your first piece. Press the top edge with an iron so you get a finished look (and no sewing - easy peasy!) and then glue it on the bottom 1/3, just overlapping the fabric a bit:

As with the top layer, only glue along that line to join the two fabrics.

Do the same in the back - wrap it around and glue along all the edges.

And then behold your work! (But not my blurry photography. Sheesh.)
Now, you can stop here and it is ready to go.
But I didn't, because everything needs a little embellishment. Right?

I printed out some phrases on card stock for both sides of the board and a bunch of L's for the magnets.

You could get all fancy and go laminate the card stock, but we aren't fancy around here. I used good ol' packaging tape and wrapped them up like little presents and hot glued them right on the board. 

Then I traced the magnets around my letters (I used magnets I already had - whatever shape you have is great!) and glued them on. I didn't bother with the tape on these.

And there you have it - all the answers to your parenting woes!
Ok, probably not, but it could help out - I think it will around here.
And if not, at least you can take a step back and admire a really cute project.
That always helps me.


  1. What an adorable idea! I love how simple it is...and that's right up my alley! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Oh my heavens that is so cute. It is such a great idea too! I like that it rewards good and makes the boys want to do good stuff for the day!

  3. On my way to the store right now to pick up applicable materials... Our four year is testing everything left in my soul. *sigh*

    Thanks for the idea!! :)

  4. Oh, Jordan Anne, I hear ya. Hang in there and let me know how it works out!

  5. like it...like it a lot! maybe we'll do a little bulletin board rendition here ('cause that's what we have on hand). we've been using your dots and stars system, too...but we need to step it up a notch! ha! oh these boys...
    thanks for the cute idea!

  6. Adorable! I was just thinking as I read it, "Well, even if it doesn't work, it sure is cute!" We all have to change up our parenting routines once in a while, so I hope this is a change for the better for you guys!

  7. Great idea. I am having trouble with my (almost) four year old little girl also testing the limits. I think I may make her one but with angel fabric if I can find it. Great inspiration - I love it!