Gifts for Success

Discussion in 'General Education' started by jbj913, Apr 12, 2008.

  1. jbj913

    jbj913 Rookie

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    Apr 12, 2008

    For the third quarter I had a student earn a 4.0 in my World History course. Not bragging, but for a student to earn a 4.0 in my class, especially in a subject such as World History and for a 9th grader, shows the student gives 110%.
    My deal is I bought the student a $25 gift card to Borders Books. And I plan on making it public to the class. I believe students should be rewarded for such accomplishments. I think there tends to be too much emphasis on failure notices and discipline. My district requires students be notified of potential failure, but not required to be notified of academic accomplishments. Which is a shame. They barely make a fuss about honor rolls anymore. I remember when honor roll students were rewarded and publicly acknowledged. Now it's become a printed out certificate in your mailbox to pass in homeroom.
    What do you guys do?
     
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  3. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Apr 12, 2008

    $25 dollars is a lot of money for me. But it's your class. Why not? I imagine you'll get comments about intrinsic value of doing well, not sending the "wrong" message, parent might object, other teachers in the school can't afford it...etc.

    But I say go ahead and have fun with the situation! And smile sweetly at anyone giving you a hard time. Nothing wrong with gifting.

    Bleech! I can hear it all now....
     
  4. Ms. Geography

    Ms. Geography Comrade

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    Apr 12, 2008

    Congrats to your student! You might consider making a certificate of some sort to give to the child (you know moms really like those for the scrapbook) to go along with your gift. I say it's awesome of you to reward you student with a gift card. We still do honor rolls and have an awards day for our students once a year.
     
  5. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Apr 12, 2008

    I don't see a thing wrong with rewarding somebody for a job well done. As to what shouldbeasleep brought up regarding intrinsic values and whatnot, I don't see that as a problem, as you didn't announce to the students that you'd be rewarding the A students. This is something the student did on his own with no reason to expect any kind of reward.
     
  6. Mr. Windchill

    Mr. Windchill Rookie

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    Apr 12, 2008

    Some will agree with your gesture, others may object (students, parents, teachers). Until you come across seriously strong objections, my advice would be to do what you feel is the right thing to do if that includes giving a gift certificate.

    Most of all ... congrats to the student!
     
  7. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    Apr 12, 2008

    I give prizes. For every citywide standardized test (and we have them 3 times per year, in 3 subjects, and twice a year in 1) I give a small trophy (the cheap kind you get from the party store) to the highest score in the class. But I also give a treat to each person who "gives it their all". I determine that by looking in their test booklets to see if they justified their answers, searched for answers and highlighted them in reading, and showed their work and labeled their answers in math, BEFORE choosing the multiple choice answer. (I always have enough treats for everyone, but not everyone actually does it, so they don't all get the treat.)

    I also give a prize for the student who improves the most from one test to the next. (Usually, it is a t-shirt - I'm always winning those from fundraisers.)
     
  8. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

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    Apr 12, 2008

    I like the idea...we have a class store, so my kids basically earn their prizes except for our reading logs. My only advice is to have a plan for what you will do if someone else accomplishes this feat again. Will you want to spend $25 every time? That's something only you will know...and there's always that chance that it won't happen again too :)
     
  9. hescollin

    hescollin Fanatic

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    Apr 12, 2008

    The school has a nice honor roll supper each nine weeks for students making the honor roll.

    Parents of Honor Students get a note, when the failing student's parents get notes.

    We have a nice candlelight program each year for the new Honor Society members. Maybe you could be a sponsor and organize the society in your school, that would be a way to honor one and others simple, cheap and in an elegant unique way.

    I don't like the idea of giving students money. In fact we would get in trouble for doing that.
     
  10. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

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    Apr 12, 2008

    They just had an article in the latest issue of the responsive classroom newsletter about holding a school-wide "success night"...I think that sounds like a great idea!
     
  11. hescollin

    hescollin Fanatic

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    Apr 13, 2008

    Make motivations for the whole class.
    A Smiley Face drawn with a bright colored magic marker on all papers that get a 100%
    Stickers.
    Read with a buddy during free reading time.
    Eat lunch by a buddy.

    If you send something home to cook. Talk to mom, you send the stuff home to make it (rice krispies) and he brings back a treat for the whole class. Be sure everybody tells him Thank You. Double praise.

    Sit at the teacher's desk.
    Have lunch with the principal.
    Join another class for indoor recess.
    Draw on the chalkboard.
    Be first in line.
    Do only half an assignment.
    Choose the music for lunch. Bring in a tape.
    Take a tape recorder home for the night.
    Use colored chalk.
    Stay in at recess to play a game with a friend.
    Use stamps and ink.
    Invite a friend from another class into the room for lunch.
    Take a class game home for the night.
    Choose a book for the teacher to read to the class.
    Move your desk to a chosen location.
    Get a fun worksheet.
     
  12. JustT

    JustT Comrade

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    Apr 13, 2008

    I believe in positive reinforcement! Students should be recognized for a job well-done :) especially if it was well deserved.

    Now, on the other hand..... with my son who is ID gifted... he can make a 100% all semester in a very competitive IB biology class... (his favorite) effortlessly. Then nose dive in history because it requires writing short essays....and that takes more effort than he wants to give. I don't think he deserves a reward for something that was easy for him.

    What I'm trying to say is you reward someone because they did little effort.... it may bring the class morale down since they know this student didn't make much effort and the subject is easy for this student. If it's something all of the students can strive for... more will rise up to the bar and celebrate a well deserved reward.
     

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