Whole Group Incentive Feedback?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by mathmagic, Aug 30, 2014.

  1. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    In my previous part-of-the-year experience and when I did my full time student teaching way back when, I've never had that much extrinsic incentives. My mentor teacher suggested that I have one though, and so I have been thinking about possibilities....trying to remain simple, but something they will still buy into (first full year + completely new district + being hired a week before = trying to keep organized and simple).

    My thought was to put a numberline-like thing on the top of the whiteboard (well, more like a rectangle) mimicking a football field, going from 0-50-0. The class (or possibly standout individual behaviors, to highlight those to the class) would be trying to earn "points/yards" to move themselves down the field to go for a touchdown. During the first day or two we would brainstorm various incentives they would like to work for (i.e. dumping ice water on their teacher's head, doing the read aloud outside in the sun, etc...), and would use each of the ones they came up with that I approve of throughout the year as a goal.

    Any feedback? Or if it sounds okay, ideas for possible whole group incentives in case they can't think of any? (Food is out, and I'm hesitant about doing a lot of free time / extra recess, as we're already going to be zapped for time as it is)
     
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  3. LiterallyLisa

    LiterallyLisa Companion

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    oh I bet they will have one idea..."MOVIE!!"

    what grade do you teach?
    I couldn't think of much...but if it is allowed at your school, you could do a pajama day, eat lunch in the classroom/outside...when I student taught I was able to get away with "letting" them act out a play as an incentive. They loved them, so after you get to know them, you might get more ideas.
     
  4. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    4th. And I will have to ask about the eating outside...we are already in the room for lunch ;)
     
  5. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Depends on the grade you teach, but for older grades I would avoid things that require a lot of upkeep or are too cutesy. The football thing would just be a pain to keep up for me. I can't even do PAT points, because it's too complicated.

    Your incentive doesn't need to be overly complex. One teacher at our school gives "frogs", which are photocopied slips of green paper that have a picture of a frog on it. They can use them to get an otter pop or other prizes from her on a certain day of the week. She just gives them out every now and then when she sees students doing something good, or they got a much improved grade on a test, or they sweep her floor, etc.

    Very simple, and it's up to her how she does them. It doesn't add a responsibility of constant point-keeping.

    For me, I don't really like extrinsic incentives, but I do give out tickets. For my class we do a lot of labs and projects. Students can use the tickets they've collected to "purchase" extra materials from my 'Engineer's Outpost' to build with or do an extra experiment with. To me that reconciles my dislike for extrinsic motivators with my goal of getting students to be intrinsically motivated to learn because they're using an extrinsic reward to increase their learning.
     
  6. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    I teach at a 6-12, but here are some whole-school incentives we use: Food (pizza, ice cream, whatever), Movie days, Fields Trips, Recognition Assemblies, Student vs. Teacher events, Dances, Pricey Prizes, and Gift cards (McDonalds, BK, etc.). Our MS uses PBIS are a way to determine who is eligible for an incentive.

    When I have seen teachers do in-class incentives, usually they give out food/candy, free time/game time or homework passes. Some send notes of praise and recognition home. I have seen 6th grade teachers give out special in-class jobs/responsibilities as an incentive but this works best with 6th graders (aka little kids).

    I don't do extrinsic incentives because my students only want tangible stuff (mostly food) that costs money. They don't want stuff like "free time" if they finish early, extra points on a test or homework passes. That stuff is not an incentive for them.
     
  7. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    I teach high school and the students earn PAT points for Friday, points = minutes. They can earn up to 4 minutes / day, which equals 20 min for Friday. So far my 5 classes earned between 16.5 minutes - 20 minutes.
    I have cards, dominoes, puzzles, etc, for them. This Friday, every single class just wanted to go outside and play basketball, or sit around the benches and talk. That was easy.
    I used to be so ';afraid' taking them outside, I was never used to it lol. Now I love it, the love it, and they earned it.
     
  8. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    ^^^ If I could take my kids outside or to the gym, I would rethink my stance on incentives because I know my kids would love this, especially being able to play ball in the gym.

    But, my Admin hates when teachers give free time - in class or outside - even if the kids earned it as a reward. They are only ok with free time if it is a PBIS event. They're always telling us to find other incentives outside of free time.

    Well, an incentive is not an incentive if the person earning it doesn't want it and it doesn't motivate them. It's like when they give us free dinner on the days we have to stay late for school events - not an incentive.
     
  9. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    I'm glad my P is understanding. I mean really, what is 4 minutes? Earning 4 minutes / class means I didn't waste 10 minutes on disruptions, it's definitely worth it.
     
  10. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    Something very simple that I have used in third grade is a cotton ball jar. Anytime you see a student/group/whole class doing really well you put in a cotton ball. You can do more than one at a time if they're really awesome! Once the jar is full they get a whole class treat. I like the movie idea. Or a good one that older kids like that I've seen as a sub is Flashlight Friday. The kids get free reading time but you turn out your lights and it's in the dark and all the kids can bring their own flashlights to read with. Just gotta obviously walk around and keep a good eye out in the dark!
     
  11. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    How old were these kids ...
     
  12. OhThePlaces

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    We have a hundreds pocket chart posted on the wall. I have a ziplock of star cutouts hanging near the bag. Each cutout has a number (1-100) written on the back.

    When students are praised as a whole (good resource or cafeteria report, complimented walking through the halls, great effort in class, etc) they earn a star. I usually choose a student to pull out a star, and they place it in the chart in front of the coordinating number. When the class earns a bingo (10 stars in a row, vertical, horizontal, or diagonal) then they earn a celebration.

    Last year we earned several... Pajama day, ice cream social, hot chocolate and a movie, an afternoon of board games, etc. It usually took them 7-10 weeks to earn a bingo. It's a very motivating system for my third graders. :)
     
  13. Luv2TeachInTX

    Luv2TeachInTX Comrade

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    I have a bulletin board of a jar and marbles. It holds 100 and we tape one up every time the class has a great day or gets a compliment, etc. Once it's full, we will have a class party. The kiddos seem to like it! I think it's good to have some kind of individual accountability, group/table accountability and class accountability.
     
  14. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    This is exactly why I was hoping to avoid using any kind of extrinsic motivation/incentives...there's a million (great) possibilities, but none of them fit my style much. Honestly, the football idea was the simplest I could come up with, though I might just simplify it even further to earning points (i.e. minutes) towards a fun activity that they choose. Of course, trying to play it extra safe, especially in a new district/school/first full year, I may have to scale it somewhat or make some of the rewards ones that still have a heavy academic focus (i.e. extra read aloud time or academic whole group class games).
     
  15. queenie

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    Sounds like a good idea! I give a link (a paper circle) and when our class chain that is hanging from the top of the board reaches the ground we have a PJ day! They can bring a show and tell item, a stuffed animal, and electronic games to play during an indoor recess. They LOVE it!
     
  16. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    Interesting -- hadn't thought about the use of the recess time re-purposed as an incentive...will definitely have to use that! Today was the first day, and man, I honestly don't want to throw any whole group piece. With no dangling incentive, I had them right in step and only once did we have to repractice lining up ...no other procedures or directions had to be repeated! We'll see what I think in a week, though ;)
     
  17. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Groupie

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    I show my students a "magic trick" then promise to teach it to them if they get enough marbles in the jar.

    That said, I avoid using points or other complex systems that take up instructional time.

    Avoid showing a movie! It tells students that instructional time is not that valuable. When my daughter's math teacher spent 3 class periods showing a Disney film, I was one of the many who complained.
     
  18. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    I write the word "GUMBALL" up on the board, and keep a bin of about 700 gumballs handy. They earn 14 gumballs if the finish the day with all 7 letters, and 1 gumball per letter if they lose any (so 6 gumballs for 6 letters, etc). If they finish the day with 0, they lose everything they've earned. There are a couple other ways they can earn gumballs, too (they triple whatever they earn with a sub, they get 5 for a hallway compliment from the principal, etc). When they fill the whole thing, they get a class reward. They typically fill it once per quarter, and it works well, because I give them the reward after their monstrous quarterly math assessments.
     
  19. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    I think 3rd grade. It wasn't my idea- I was pushing in as the special ed teacher into a regular Ed room. The kids loved it though. Obviously it wouldn't work with fifth and up probably cause you can't trust them, depends on the type of kids and the district.
     
  20. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    Ha, thankfully I've never been a big fan of showing movies (I showed portions of a film that we compared and contrasted to a read aloud book with the class I was with for a few months...but only as a long-built-up reward and only because it provided good opportunities to discuss the purposes behind each of the differences)...and even though the kids eat lunch in the classroom, out school highly suggests that videos not be shown during that lunch time.

    That magic trick idea is one I've never heard of -- I may have to try it just for the sake of making myself go learn a magic trick ;)
     
  21. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Groupie

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    I've shown scenes from movies to show how the screenwriter connected the beginning to the end or how running gags connected various portions of the movie, but it was in conjunction with a writing unit where students were attempting to do the same thing. The purpose was not entertainment.

    Also, by rewarding students by teaching them something, makes learning something new a reward to be sought and not something to avoid.
     

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