Saturday, March 2, 2013

Good Choices

It's been three months since my last blog post, but I have a good excuse.  I haven't really been at school much lately.  In fact Wednesday was my first day back to school after spending the last five weeks recovering from foot surgery.  I fractured my foot and ankle in a fall down the stairs on Christmas Day, and eventually had to have one of the broken bones repaired surgically.  For four weeks I was not allowed to put any weight on my foot, and now that I can walk, I'm still wearing the lovely black boot.

While I couldn't be at school, I kept touch with my students through letter writing and our Kidblogs.  It was a great way for us to communicate back and forth, and I have become an even bigger fan of introducing students to blogging at an early age.

Besides blogging with the kids, I spent my weeks of confinement knitting, reading, watching too much television, and exploring pins on Pinterest.  I found lots of great ideas to try out once I did get back to school.

I really liked this idea for using a hundreds chart for behavior management.  I talk with my students a lot about making good choices, so that was the title I used,  along with this quote that we all have posted in our classrooms, "Work hard, be kind, dream big!"

When the class makes good choices, draw a number from the point can.  I put the numbers from 1 to 100 on craft sticks, and put them in an old canister that I had.  When something good happens, I have a student draw a stick.  They color in the corresponding number on the hundred chart.  When we have ten in a row, we earn an extra recess or class celebration.

It's easy to set up and administer, and provides many opportunities for positive reinforcement.  I like it!  It's working well so far! The kids like being the one to draw a stick and color the chart.  As a side note, it's also a great opportunity to teach about probability.  We have control over the making good choices, but luck plays into which numbers are drawn.

It's great to be back, and this is giving us something new to work towards.

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