Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Rewards Made Easy

If you are like me, you may realize that your good students need to be recognized just as much as your challenging students need to be guided.

I thought and thought and came up with this FANTASTIC idea to help recognize and motivate my students who worked hard in class and followed the classroom rules and procedures.

I searched on-line and found a FREE scrabble font. Next I decided on what "prizes" my students could earn. This is the best part because you can choose items that cost you ZERO. ZIP. NADA. ZILCH. Hey- as a teacher, this can be very important!

After deciding what I wanted to allow my students to earn (and I could live with), I typed up the prizes (careful to avoid words that, when partially spelled create words we want to avoid- like "class" which could lead to an embarrassing moment for you).

When you have your prizes typed, print TWO copies of the words. I printed one on colored cardstock for each of the classes I teach (Each class is assigned a specific color in our school). If you only teach one class, you can use any color you want- or go with the traditional brown scrabble tile color.

Next, trim down and mount the white copy on a sheet of colored cardstock and laminate. These will be your wall mounted game boards that students place their earned tiles on (see below). Also, laminate the colored copy of the words as well (these will be cut out and used to cover the gameboards).

After you have laminated the words on the colored cardstock, cut around each tile. I stored my tiles in zipper pencil bags.


When the students behave, or earn a tile, have a student reach into the tile pile and draw one out. I told my classes that the student who draws the tile gets to decide where it is placed. I roll a piece of masking tape and the student adds his/her tile to the chart. As you can see, students have different ideas of what they want to win.

When a class spells a word the class wins that prize and a date is set to redeem it (make sure it is reasonably soon, or students will lose their interest in playing). After a word is spelled, ALL the tiles are removed for ALL the boards and the games starts again. Depending on how generous you are with your tiles, you students could/should win about one time every 1-2 weeks.

I am enjoying great success with this and I hope that I have inspired you to try something new as well! :)

-Cheers!

40 comments :

  1. What a fun idea! I love it! Thanks for sharing!

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  2. A great idea for older children! Thanks for sharing!
    (hopefully they figure out sometime soon that working together will lead to a reward sooner!)

    Alison
    Teaching Maths with Meaning

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  3. Peanut- Thanks for stopping by! :)

    Alison- Thanks for the kind words. I am excited to be apart of your awesome 100 follower giveaway. :)

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  4. Super idea, Mr. Hughes!

    Rewards work well for just about any age group. Our school uses all types of reward systems, in order to get the children to perform well. And it works!

    At home, my child response favorably to candy—any candy will do. For weeks now, I’ve been trying to get Christopher to write the letter “U” so that it doesn’t resemble a lowercase “a”. Nothing seemed to be working until, I offered up a lolly-pop.

    Gosh, what my boy won’t do for a ten minute sugar high!

    I'm really loving your new design!

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  5. Hey Diplo_Daddy-
    Thanks for the comment. I appreciate knowing that parents are supportive of incentive based ideas (sometimes, not ALL the time).

    Glad to hear that all is going well for you in your part of the world. Have a great day! :)

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  6. Love that idea! I think I'll put something together this weekend and be ready to roll it out next week. Thank you so much for the inspiration!

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  7. MrsArnold-
    WAHOO! I am so excited that you are going to try this. My students LOVE it. It is crazy the "power of the tile" has in my room- ha ha.

    Have a great weekend! :)
    -MrHughes

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  8. Just found this! Looking forward to trying it with my own class.

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  9. Hey Carrie!
    So glad that you found me! :) And that you have a new idea to try. WAHOO! I hope it is successful.
    -MrHughes

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  10. So in love! Wonder how I could tweak this for my virtual classroom....

    Jennifer Smith-Sloane
    4mulaFun

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  11. What if you spelled them with digital letters- for whatever reward as jpegs on a side bar. Then as they earn a letter, replace it with a "filled" copy of the jpegs?!?! Did that make sense? Ha ha. I can try to explain that again if needed.

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  12. WOW! I love this idea! I will change my reward system next year!

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    Replies
    1. So glad that I could inspire you to try something new! I wish you great success! :) Let me know if you have any more questions!

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  13. Replies
    1. Thanks so much. I hope that it can also be tweaked to work for your students in your classroom! Have a great day. :)

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  14. Do you put only the possible letter tiles in the bag? Or all letters? I love this idea!

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    Replies
    1. Ha ha! Never thought of adding more letters. I have only put in the letters that spell the words they are trying to earn. I wish you great success. :)
      Enjoy!

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  15. I am doing this with my resource classes next year! I can't wait! This has solved the refilling of the candy bucket problem for me!
    I also am blogging about this idea on my blog!

    Kim
    Mrs. H's Resource Room

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    Replies
    1. Wahoo! So pleased that I was able to share an idea that you can use! I wish you great success. If you have any questions, please let me know. Cheers!
      -MrHughes

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  16. So very creative! Thanks for sharing; I love this idea!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for stopping by! I hope you can make this work in YOUR classroom. It was really fun to do and the kiddos LOVED it!

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  17. Love this idea! I am going to a new grade next year so I am looking for new things to do. Can't wait. Thanks

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    Replies
    1. Hey Pam-
      This is super easy to make and use. What grade will you be teaching?
      Thanks for stopping by and have a wonderful summer! :)

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  18. Replies
    1. Greetings Erin!
      So pleased that you stopped by. Even more pleased that you found an idea you love and can use! Enjoy and please let me know if you have any questions. Stop by again soon-
      Mr. Hughes :)

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  19. Thank you. I love this idea. I actually got Scrabble tiles and put magnets on the back to use on magnetic board. I can't wait to try. Thanks again.

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    Replies
    1. What a brilliant idea! LOVE IT! Thanks for sharing and thanks for stopping by. :)

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  20. Yep...using this one!! Thank you!

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    Replies
    1. Wahoo!
      So pleased that this inspired you! YOU ROCK! (AND, Happy Birthday!)

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  21. Great idea! Thank you so much for posting this! I can't wait to make this and try it with my class this year.

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    Replies
    1. YEA WENDY!
      I am so thrilled that this is going to work for you. Please let me know if you have any further questions. :)

      Delete
  22. I can't wait to try this reward system. I need the template to type the reward words so that it will look like scrabble. Thanks!

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    Replies
    1. Hey Donna!
      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. The font is linked in my post for the words. Enjoy! :)

      Delete
  23. This is such a fun idea!
    What does a "pirate day" include?

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    Replies
    1. Greetings!
      Thanks for your comments. Pirate Day ROCKS!
      Here is a link to a blog post. I have several others as well, just search for Pirate Day on my blog. :)
      http://educatorslife.blogspot.com/2011/09/let-piratey-week-begin.html
      Cheers!
      Mr. Hughes

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  24. Hi.. what a great idea! School starts Monday, and I just got started on your idea for my third grade class. I know they'll enjoy this new type of reward system. Just one question... you mentioned you laminated the letter tiles. Did you laminate the entire sheet of individual letters, then cut them apart? Or did you cut out each little letter, then try to run them through the laminator? Thinking it would be easier to laminate the whole sheet of letter tiles, then cut apart.. but worried the lamination won't hold up. Thanks for any advice!

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    Replies
    1. Hey Jill!
      I laminated and then cut them out. They have been holding up fine for quite some time. I just used masking tape to take them on. Works like a charm.

      Thanks for your kind words. I wish you great success! :)

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  25. What is the criteria you use for the class to earn 1-2 letters a week? Do you have a system you se for that, or is it up to your discretion about how and when?

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    Replies
    1. Howdy Abbey!
      What a great question. I actually used our classroom rules as the basis. If they followed the rules for a set amount of time- math, reading, read aloud, etc. then they had the chance to earn a tile. Sometimes I used homework- for every 5 that had it they earned a tile. Hope that helps.

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  26. Thank you for the great idea! Have been thinking about doing something along this line..:)

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