Sunday, March 18, 2012

Phe Chart Tutorial

     A few months ago I saw a nifty phe chart for little kids.  The idea was to get the kids learning how to count their daily intake of phe, figure out how much more they could take in, and make them accountable at an early age.  Most of the parents that I talked to, started using these at home around 3 years of age.  I figured, Lily's pretty close to 2 1/2, can count, helps make her "milk", knows she has PKU, and realizes that there's food that we eat that will make her sick.  I just kind of figured that she was ready to try it out and we could work on her counting at the same time!
     I belong to several PKU groups on facebook and asked the parents how they assembled their phe charts for their kids.  Here are some of the pictures that I was sent...

     Ryan and I purchased a white magnetic board at Walmart.  I don't recall the price, but it was definitely under $10.  Then like normal, I procrastinated...I just wasn't sure what I wanted to make on the board.  Then after Valentine's Day, I was at Walmart again and saw in their clearance section these really cute decal sheets.  They were leftovers from Valentine's Day and were a quarter a piece!  Right then, I knew that these would work for Lily's phe chart!

     I put the tree decal on the board and counted out a bunch of hearts.  The thinking was that Lily could put a magnet on each heart as she ate the phe.  This would show her how much phe she had left for the day.  I figured that each heart would get one magnet worth 10 phe.  I would also make up some 1/2 magnets worth 5 phe.  At this point, Lily can receive 290 mg. of phe each day.  It was higher, but her body quit breaking it down, so her intake amount was lowered.

     I figured that each magnet was worth 10 phe, so I needed about 30 hearts on the board.  It was actually more difficult than I thought!  I kept running out of room with the big hearts and had to keep moving them around to get them all to fit!  All in all, I think it turned out pretty good.

     Then I decided to make the magnets.  It didn't seem like it would be hard.  And it wasn't hard, just time consuming!  After assembling the magnets, I realized that they just weren't ideal for an obsessive-compulsive two year old!  Seriously, if things aren't just right or in their correct place, she freaks out.  And since she's two, she combines that issue with her normal two year old tantrums!  Fortunately for use, they usually only happen at home!  However, I'm pretty sure our neighbors have heard her.

     I then added a ribbon to the top of the board to hang it.  I also decided to add a pocket to the bottom, to place the magnets in, while they weren't on the board.  I made 3 sections in the pocket to keep the magnets a little more organized.  I figured that the first section could hold the 1-10 magnets, the next section the 11-20 magnets, and the rest would be in the third section.  I'm hoping that this will make it easier to locate each magnet!

     So here's the final phe chart.  Lily will help me add her magnets as she increases by 5 or 10 phe.  She's counting by one, but I'm counting by 10's!  In no way am I getting rid of my normal phe tracking chart.  For that we have a dry-erase board on the fridge.  We write the food and amount of phe as Lily goes throughout the day.  We tally it up as we go and have a section to write down her goal amount and when her last blood draw was.  This makes it easier for Ryan and I to always know where Lily is at. 

     I plan on updating the magnets and just using card stock with numbers.  This will be easier for two year old fingers to use and won't fall off as easily as the heart magnets that I made.  I'll also be posting a tutorial for the magnets if you're interested!  They turned out really cute, but just not the right type of magnet for my little lady!

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1 comment:

  1. Great job! I really should do something like this for my son. He's six and understands a bit about his pku but doesn't quite get the points part of it.


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