Awesome Teachers Praise Their Students To Increase Positive Behaviors (GMTT – #8)

Remember last week’s Give More To Teaching Idea? “Walk around, Talk around?” Well I am going to add Praise Around. This is super powerful in conjunction with movement through the classroom. And did you know that it is a researched based behavior modification tactic? Plus it takes no additional resources, tools, or training. You can start this TODAY! Woot! Woot!

What It Does For You

  • Reduces the amount of redirections and precision requests.
  • Give students many reminders of what behaviors you are looking for.
  • Increases motivation and “buy in” from your students.
  • Reduces the amount of negative behaviors.
  • Keeps more behaviors from starting.

How To Do It

There are several ways to really make this your own. One way is start calling out praise like a cheesy politician… or Oprah. Start smiling and pointing to kids that are doing the behaviors you like. (“And Becky is at her desk, And Kevin has his pencil out!”)

Another way is to start lifting and dropping your head like a soccer goalie. (“I am looking for kids who are writing their names down… ah, and Eric is doing it…”)

A third way is to quietly walk near a student and praise them. This method is particularly powerful when you are trying to get kids to quiet down. Kids are curious. They are going to be so interested in what you are saying so quietly to everyone, they are going to pipe down!

If your class has a group point system, this can be extra meaningful to just start adding points to your system. (“Jesus just got 3 points, and Emma is following directions for 3 points…”)

Make sure to use student names. Leaving out the name takes away some of praise’s power!

Wrapping It Up

Walk around, talk around, praise around. You’ll get your student’s attention. Then add on those precision commands for when your students need extra redirection… but they might never need it if you keep up these great strategies!

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