Product design agency case study | Design of children's reward jar
Reward jars with tokens in green, pink and blue
Spencer Brookes Designs logo

Spencer Brookes Designs supply crafters, hobbyists and schools with laser cut wooden designs. Having opened an online shop they wanted to extend their already popular range of reward jars.

Children thrive on the satisfaction of an instant reward so the aim of the reward jar was to help encourage and reward good behaviour. When the child does something good, like cleaning their room, they are rewarded with a token. With other reward systems you either get rewarded or you don’t. But this product is positioned differently. It’s a tiered reward system so there are different levels to achieve. You still get recognition for performance, but you could improve and receive a better reward next time.

Reward jar concept sketches by product designers at Simple Design Works

Simple to manufacture, simple to use

This product had to be visually engaging but also simple for children of all ages to grasp the concept, learn and use. From a manufacturing perspective, it was designed and engineered to ensure ease of assembly, requiring only two screws to hold all components together. This clever design minimised labour needed during production therefore reducing the overall manufacturing cost. Prototyping a number of different iterations allowed subtle details (such as the internal shape and spacing) to be tweaked and refined to ensure that the tokens can be inserted and removed easily. Strong magnets were integrated into the back ribbing so it could be attached to a fridge door or any other magnetic surface effortlessly.

Child putting token into reward jar on fridge
Green, pink and blue reward jar product in packaging designed by Simple Design Works for Spencer Brookes Design

Making everyday tasks fun

The final product was a range of bold and brightly coloured reward jars that included tokens in bronze (1 star), silver (2 stars) and gold (3 stars) to symbolise the level of achievement. An optional additional pack of coins was also designed to help teach younger children about currency. The transparent front makes it easy to spot space for a child to add more tokens to fill the jar. Which they can only fill with good behaviour of course! And when the jar is full, they simply trade in the tokens for a reward and empty the Reward Jar by tipping it upside down. Additional reward products have since been developed to complement the original Reward Jar and are available online.

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