How Whole Class Incentives Motivate Positive Behavior

    Two years ago, my class was starting to get pretty squirrely….and it was the beginning of November. I knew I had to do something to stay sane until Thanksgiving break. So, I printed out a turkey and some feathers. The idea was that students had to earn a certain amount of feathers and they would get a class reward. They voted on a comfy movie day for our one day of school the week of Thanksgiving and I *might* have made sure they earned it ; )  

Since that original whole class incentive, I have heard so much amazing feedback from teachers all over the world who have found success using them in their classroom. Here are some frequently asked questions and more information so you can see if it might work for you!

What was first just a turkey is now an editable resource with all of the fixing to make an entire bulletin board display. Of course, you can keep it as simple or make it as complex as you would like. But, each Positive behavior bulletins include a display of a classroom goal, expected behaviors and a whole group reward that students will earn when they reach their goal along with a themed saying about positive behavior. The visual not only tracks the progress towards the goal but it also helps students stay motivated towards reaching it! Since it changes monthly, the novelty keeps it exciting and the engagement doesn’t wear off.

Each incentive resource includes everything to make a full blown bulletin board but you can pick and choose how much you want to include! 

When I change out the display for the month, I take the time to sit down with my class and have a chat about what is going well in our classroom and what needs some work. I typically have 10-12 of the behavior pieces already printed out and ready to go. We talk about a realistic goal and how much time we have to reach it. It is definitely a group decision but I would anticipate earning 1 behavior feather (or light, mitten, heart ect.) every 1-2 days. So if you have 15 school days in December, a good goal might be 7 or 8.

Since February is short (and usually includes some snow days), we kept the goal lower this month. 

There are over 20 specific behaviors including lining up quietly, positive report from specials, cleaning up the classroom and manners at lunch. There are also editable pieces that you can type or write your own behaviors!

Just like all of the behavior choices, there are many reward options included–18 to be exact! They range from lunch in the classroom to a STEM activity. Some of them are seasonal (Shamrock shakes in March, hot cocoa in January ect.) As always, you can adjust to fit your needs or create your own! But I tried to include as many as possible and rewards that cost little or no money for you.
Whole class incentives certainly encourage positive behavior but they are not a quick fix or substitute for consistent classroom management. This is an additional layer to a functioning behavior management system which starts with relationship building and establishing high expectations. If you need some additional resources for behavior management, you can check out more here.
Interested in checking out more Positive Behavior Bulletin Board? Click here!
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