This year I changed my behavior management in my classroom. When I taught third grade my students had lots of responsibility in monitoring their own choices. When I had a class that wasn’t ready for that I went to the typical green, yellow, red system. The one thing that I did not like in my behavior system was that I felt like I was always harping on the bad. No, Stop, Don’t do that, Make Better Choices, blah, blah, blah, blah! This year, moving to kindergarten, I wanted a system with more levels (I felt my younger kids needed that) and I wanted to be more positive! I am generally a very positive person which I think is why I hated always being negative with my kids. I wanted my focus on the kids that were doing things right and making good choices not the other way around. So, after searching Pinterest of course, I settled on this:
Almost 2 weeks in and I LOVE it! I can tell a big difference in myself. I will admit that I was worried I would not see the good things to move kids up. I felt like maybe I had programmed myself to look for the wrong, that seeing the right would not happen. Not the case at all. I love moving kids clips up when they are meeting our classroom expectations and making good choices. Right now I am moving clips a lot. I want that immediate reinforcement for good and bad choices (yes I still have some of those) and I do think it is working. When I move one kiddo up for “sitting in a great learning position” I see 21 more immediately jump into learning position. I take it in the hallway with us when we are working on walking in the hall and it works there too!
This is how it works in my room. All kids start on green, Ready to Learn, everyday.
Students making good choices move up. The goal is to make it to rainbow at the very top. Why rainbow – well my 9 year old son told me that if it was pink the boys wouldn’t want to be there, so NO PINK! I opted for rainbow instead and when a student reaches rainbow they get a rainbow sticker in their daily behavior folder. They love it and I hear kids everyday talking about making it to rainbow. When they make a bad choice, usually after at least 1 verbal warning, they move down. One level down, orange, is Think About It. There are no other consequences other than an orange notation in the folder. Yellow and Red (below orange) means loss of privilege.
If a student makes it to rainbow they get one of my special beads to add to their string. What is this you ask? Well, its my reward system since I didn’t want to mess with a treasure box. Hanging on the lockers is a piece of yarn with a knot tied at the end and tape at the top to make a threader.
My special beads are plastic beads from Hobby Lobby. Here is my Pinterest inspiration (but no necklaces becuase I knew my kinders wouldn’t be able to undo the fastner themselves – thus the yarn) from The Teacher Wife (she uses it as a reading reward):
In my classroom, students get to add a bead each time they make it to rainbow and on Friday if they were green or higher the entire week. I just talked it up when I introduced it and the kids want those beads! I also found some star beads – those are my Super Stars and kids earn them for special things (Super Walker when we are working on hallway walking, learning 25 sight words, etc.) When the string gets filled they get to tie it up in a necklace and wear it in class or take it home. Then they will start over. For now, at least, its working. Our school has a school wide behavior program that students earn tickets to spend at a little store so this is where they can earn their trinkets.
I love being able to focus on the positive and deal with the negative only when I need to. What do you do in your classroom to focus on positive behaviors?