Thursday, March 14, 2013

Classroom Management GEM!

Well I had this whole big post about the lack of communication present in Education today, not to mention the amount of B.S.  We're talking 3 paragrahs of seething anger!  Fortunately (for you) my aunt called and I vented to her.  She probably thinks I'm ready to have a complete breakdown, haha!

So her misfortune for calling at the wrong time is to your benefit :)  Okay, now on to the good stuff!

I wanted to post a new behavior management system I started in my classroom after reading a FABULOUS blog post from The Teeny Tiny Teacher.  You can read the post here.  Well I only read the post a week ago but I fell completely in love with and had to make it right away!   The general idea of this management technique is simple.....positively reinforce the students when they are doing something good.  You do this in the form of "Gold Tickets" which are really pieces of yellow construction paper.  I still find it funny that kids buy into this stuff!  Anyway, you reinforce them constantly (I have over 200 gold tickets!) 
   "Oh Jennifer, I love how you are sitting."  BAM, gold ticket.        
   "Michael, you are working so nicely."  BAM, gold ticket.  
 The first hour of the day when I implemented this I had kids getting gold tickets probably every other minute.  If they smiled or told me I was the BEST teacher, they got a gold ticket.  Not really but you get the idea!

I jazzed mine up a little from the Teeny Tiny Teacher's but I'm just a little
OCD that way :)  Sorry, I can't get the pic to rotate!

I made up a location to house the little nuggets of pure teacher bliss (aka: gold tickets.) This probably  took the most time up front and even that didn't take too long.  Here is the pic of that:

In the picture they look like McDonald's french fries but I promise you they don't in person! 

Now you may be wonder why the kids are magically morphing into angelic little children.  Is it simply for a yellow piece of paper you ask?  Why of course not!  This, my friends, is why these little gold gems are working wonders in my classroom:

TA-DA!  Yep, Friday Fun-day Activities is what has transformed my group of gabbers!   No, it is not made of pure gold.  No it is not worth millions of dollars.  In fact, it was made from Dollar Store posterboard!  That's right my friends, everything you see here to implement this system in your own classroom cost less than $3.00.  The Friday Fun-day activity board works like this:  On Friday, you count up the gold tickets for each student from the whole week and write it down.  The student with the most gold tickets gets to pick their activity first.  Obviously, this is a coveted position to be in.  The student with the next highest amount gets to pick 2nd and so on and so on.  The activities include Free Choice, Computer time, Painting, Play-Doh, iPads and many more AMAZING activities to choose from.  But the catch is that only "X" number of students are allowed at each activity so you want to be as high up that totem pole as possible come Friday afternoon!

That's it.  That's the miracle!  Let me tell you, I started this on Monday and I no longer have the class of chatty-Cathy's I had since September.  My students are no longer tattling.  They aren't fighting over the table eraser (but I had it first!)  Those children have been magically replaced by children seated nicely in their seats with hand's folded, smiling at me, secretly saying, "Oh puleeezzzeee, give me a gold ticket!"

I decided to run with this the first week without introducing any guidelines.  I wanted them to taste the victory before setting up any real structure.  So today, we decided what behaviors will get you a gold ticket.  Believe it or not, the kids made up harder rules than I was planning to suggest.  They are brutal little things!  The list for losing tickets was so much longer than the list for getting tickets!  Gotta luv'em!

So there you have it.  Thank you to the Teeny Tiny Teacher for the wonderful mid-year inspiration!  Now I want to hear from you.  Do you want to / plan to implement this in your classroom?  Do you think this will work for your little kiddies?  Do you have a better system that works wonders?  Tell me about it!


  1. That. Is. AWESOME! Wow. Thank you for the amazing idea! I love that it doesn't include a "treasure box prize" too. This is my first year at this school and my co-teacher uses the treasure box (and since we switch classes 1/2 way through the day) I, unfortunately, have a treasure box. I'm all about the positive reinforcement and this is brilliant! I noticed that you mentioned a list of why a ticket might be taken you do take them away for negative behavior? I'm always wishy-washy about that. I don't know if it should strictly be a positive thing and it never gets taken away...or if it should! (Sorry, I'm writing you a novel!)
    I think this is wonderful. Definitely want to do it! Thank you so much for sharing!!!!

    Jungle Learners

  2. Hey Melissa, I will actually be posting a picture of "the list," but it's important to remember the KIDS made it up, not me. They were pretty tough about it. I like to say they "lose" a ticket instead of "I take a ticket away" because it reinforces that THEY are the ones in control of the outcome. I do this when they are breaking a school rule, hitting, calling out, getting out of their seat, etc. One of my kiddies actually said "destroying Ms. Hill's things" haha! Thanks for commenting!

    1. Thanks for replying! I do like the "lose" a ticket phrase a lot, and it's true. They need to learn that all actions have a consequence, whether good or bad. I pinned this yesterday and have had SO many repins on it already. Great post. I'm your newest follower!

      Jungle Learners

  3. I read the original post after seeing it in the TPT forum. Then I read your post and I am even more positive about wanting gold tickets in my classroom.

    I love the idea of having them decide what gets a ticket taken away. We did that for what gets your clip moved down in the beginning of the year. It always hits home when I say "I think you know what to do. We decided in the beginning of the year behavior like that was not acceptable in this classroom." They go move their clip down without me even asking!

    Thanks for posting!


  4. I'll tell you Carrie, it's working wonders! We had our first "Friday Fun-Day" and it really hit home with the kids who didn't earn a lot of tickets or kids who lost a lot of tickets. They seemed to really "get-it!"



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