A well-run classroom is a beautiful thing! Teachers work very hard to get their students to the point where their students are working at their potential, both behaviorally and academically.
Documenting behavior or academic issues is often needed to help students reach their potential. This can be cumbersome when you already have too many things on your "to do list".
Documenting for me was taking too much of my time. I knew I needed to work smarter, not harder. I did not want to carry a clipboard with me all of the time or interrupt the flow of my lesson to jot down a tally mark or note.
I remember using a counter when I went to the grocery store. (see picture above) I could not find the same type of counter as I used at the grocery store.
I found one that knitters use (see first picture). It works the same way and is small enough to fit in your hand or pocket. I highly recommend it when you are documenting an issue like self-control. Quick, easy way to document how many times a student blurts in a given time period.
One of my favorite things to do is shop at thrift stores. Thrift stores are a great place to find inspiration! Your students will fondly remember this toy from their toddler years. This toy can be a wonderful visual cue and behavior tool.
- Set one on each table to keep track of team points.
- Use it as a voice monitor. Colored rings or different amounts of rings can signify different voice levels.
- Keep it at your teacher's table. Suggestions:
- All rings on the stack = do not interrupt
- Four rings on the stack = you may ask a question if the teacher is not helping another student.
Integrate vocabulary, word work, spelling, or seasonal words with the Hangman game. You can use this a variety of ways:
- The team that is organized first for a lesson gets to guess a letter.
- Let a student who is working quietly guess a letter.
- Show your class an example of an assignment that was outstanding. Let this student guess a letter.
- Lunch in the classroom
- Shoes off during work time
- Extra computer time
- Use gel pens for a word work assignment
Positive! Positive! Positive! It is a great way to motivate your students to do their best. One of my favorite reward systems is the B.U.G. system. This stands for Being Unusually Good. The easiest way I found to organize this is to assign each student a number. I made a bulletin board with numbers. Under each number was a pushpin. When students earned a bug, they hung their bug on the pushpin. This is an open-ended type of system. You can adapt it to fit your management style. At the beginning of the year, my students earned a reward when they earned 5 bugs. Each quarter, I increased the number of bugs needed to earn a prize. I gave bugs for a variety of things.
- During small group lessons, I would say a sight word. My students wrote the words on a dry erase board that had the dotted lines. Each student who spelled the word correctly, used correct letter formation, lines, and space earned a bug.
- Being the first student to clean up at dismissal time
- Going above and beyond on a journal assignment
Get a free copy of this positive behavior system.
Do you have any tips to share?
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