A large part of being a teacher is motivating others to do the right thing. I started to think about my group of silly boys. I realized that I had to change my behavior management system. I told them that starting Monday each person will get a behavior report that will go home. Normally I do not have to do this in middle school, but these boys act like they are in kindergarten. Once I mentioned this, they started to behave better.
Usually when I want the class quiet, I would just say "can I have your attention" or stand up front.
Not this year. When I did that they would keep talking and I had to
repeat myself. So I had to bring back the"give me five". I raise my hand and they have to raise theirs. This way I can see who is with me and who is not. I can see if they are paying attention. Any group who holds up the class with get marked off on the behavior report. After doing this a few times, I saw that most kids watched me walk up front and they were ready to go before me. =)
I also decided that I need to step up my rewards. I usually keep a prize box, but now I needed to get prizes better suited to silly little boys such as noise putty, sticky squishy frogs, etc. I went to oriental trading and they are having a special, free shipping and ten dollars off if you spend 75. I was able to get a ton of stuff for $70. I did get a few items for the girls like jelly bracelets. Students earn raffle tickets and we draw prizes on Friday.
I got special 100 dollar bill magnetic bookmarks for those who get 100% on their times tables.They should have mastered their times tables in 3rd grade. By 6th grade they are so important, but most of them do not know them. I found a computer program to test them and drill them. Since school started I have 6 kids who got 100%. Most of them still have a failing grade, so I am hoping that the extra incentive of the special bookmark will get them going. I also told them that the first class to get 5 100% gets a prize. One class got the five. Now I have to get the other class motivated to beat the first class.