Super Quick, Easy Short-Term Classroom Management!

This nifty little plan has helped me out in the short term time and time again! I want to make sure that I am clear - I don't believe this is a long-term classroom management technique. I've used this as a transitional management tool.  

It's EASY, motivating for the whole class, and is incredibly easy to implement! (It's pretty cheap too!)

I will say again, that this quick little system is terrific for smaller, short term learning and rewards. I call it a transitional management tool. It works well to teach and reinforce procedures and to break bad habits (after previously earned procedures have been forgotten or gotten too relaxed). 

I've used it when a new student arrived who had a reputation for being difficult. I've used it in the days prior to holidays. And I've used it when a co-teacher was out for two weeks due to surgery (throwing the schedule into turmoil).

I've also used it when I'm trying to focus on whole class participation, working in groups (for reluctant workers), and to prevent blurting out answers.

What I do:
I print out a colored picture of anything interesting to your class - maybe something interesting from a subject that you're studying. The picture above is a monster truck that I chose mainly to motivate a student who was refusing to participate in class discussions. On days that he raised his hand to join in, the class earned a puzzle piece.

**Please note: Of course I never told the class (or my reluctant student) that he was the main focus of the reward system. I simply announced that when everyone was actively involved and raising their hands, that the whole class would earn a puzzle piece.

I chose different pictures, and I never told them what the picture was - they had to guess! That was part of the fun! 

I keep student names on sticks, and each time a puzzle piece was earned, I pulled a student's name out to select a puzzle piece to hang up front on the whiteboard.

Prizes can be anything that you choose. I've used rewards such as extra i-pad time, a video clip (my class LOVES funny cats on youtube - preview first - you never know what you may see or hear on Youtube!!), or even no homework.

I laminate the colored picture, then cut it into pieces. The puzzle pieces can be cut into as many pieces as you choose, but make sure that the pieces aren't so small that the goal seems impossible!

I would suggest that you begin with six pieces. Add a piece of magnetic tape to the back and, VOILA! A quick, easy, and cheap reward system!

I hope this simple trick works for you - I'd love to hear about it if you use it!

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