Every few years you get a group of kids that help you become a better teacher, and this year is that group for me. They need a lot of reinforcement, both positive and negative, and are high energy. My engagement strategy toolbox has increased as I’ve tried out new methods to keep them interested in our lessons and our learning. My classroom management continues to evolve and improve. They’ve already made tremendous gains and I’ve seen some critical shifts in their thought processes about school, learning, and their role in the classroom.
I use ClassDojo as my individual behavior system. It allows me to incorporate personal behavior plans into one overall system, keeps solid data I can refer back to, and allows me to reward students for their good choices. I know there are a lot of people who feel that displayed behavior plans are not appropriate, or that ClassDojo’s information keeping doesn’t align with FERPA. However, I love ClassDojo and so do my students. Those are both different topics for a different day. If you’d like to see how I use CD with my students, you can check out this blog post.
I started by creating a Christmas scene complete with presents.
Then, I added numbers to the presents and hyperlinked them to slides with rewards listed.
I loved it! It was exactly what I was envisioning. But, I wanted to try it out with my students first so we did it for Thanksgiving using a turkey.
I introduced it to students and added rewards that I knew they’d get excited about (piece of candy, adding 2 letters to our class reward, everyone gets a Dojo point). I did some research to find the best way to set it up, and came up with a system that I LOVE.
The best part is that when students choose a number, a RANDOM reward slide is displayed. I can have 17 different slides, 7 different slides, or 3 different slides. It doesn’t matter. The students know they have the opportunity to get that same reward again that day. Because it’s random, I can show students the rewards they can earn, only when I change them. It’s also powerful that we can set up the rewards together so students are invested in earning them. And they can be changed whenever I want them.
It fits perfectly into the positive reinforcement systems we already have in place. I have Dojo points, and whole class compliment letters as rewards. I also have rewards like 3 minutes of talking time, and brain breaks. It allows me to give the whole class smaller, more immediate rewards. It’s been a game changer- especially during that crazy time that is right before Thanksgiving Christmas.
I created a full year’s worth of settings to keep your classroom management on point throughout the year. There are 25 different images/files with different holiday/thematic and classroom themes. Each setting is it’s own file so that you can just type in your rewards, and GO. It’s super easy to set up to work for you in your classroom. To check it out in my TPT store click the image below.
To try it out in your classroom for FREE you can use the Christmas version. It’s perfect for this time of year, especially since students tend to get a little bit excited about the holidays. Just click on the image below to download it.
ETA: This was so powerful in my classroom last year, that I’m going to use it all year long now. I’m going to introduce it with this Back to School version. It’s free so you can try it out in your room. Just click the image below.
To see more about how to set it up so you can use it in your classroom, check out the video below.