Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Classroom Behavior Management- Why I'm NOT Using a Clip Chart

Is there a teacher out there that doesn't want to come across more and more techniques for classroom management? I didn't think so either. These kids keep us on our toes and we have to keep them on theirs. Adding in new ideas and techniques for behavior management is a great way to do that. 

Like almost every classroom from coast to coast, last year I used a clip chart. Correction, let me say, I HAD a clip chart. Our clip charts in pre-school only have 4 colors, but this idea was right over the heads for my group of students. Maybe 1 or 2 would grasp the concept with serious instruction/reinforcement, but for the most part, in one ear and out the other. They knew green and purple were good colors, but for the most part the clip chart was not a good fit for us and not used to to it's full potential.

Here is what last years clip chart looked like. It's funny to read my post on it from last summer. I was really looking forward to using THIS technique over the one I had previously. Ha, now here I am doing the same thing again. Trial & error, trial & error. 


My new technique will incorporate all of the positive reinforcement we are constantly giving our students, along with a tangible item (the Popsicle stick), which will be much more concrete for my students, and some earn time. I also envision this to replace a portion of the edible reinforcements given in the classroom as well. (Which is never a bad thing!)

I will be using the Positive Reinforcement Pocket Chart by Carson Dellosa. If you are interested in purchasing this you can check it out by clicking {here}. Included in the packet are these same editable name tags along with the header for the pocket chart. If a pocket chart won't suit your needs you could use little cups, buckets, baggies in student desks, etc.

I am also using skinny yellow Popsicle sticks for my "happy sticks", which I ordered online. I got 400 sticks for only $9 plus S&H. That sure beats spray painting them or anything! You can click {here} to check out the site I ordered my sticks from. 

Thank you to my niece for adding smiles to A LOT of popsicle sticks for me!

When a child is caught following directions, being a good friend, sharing, etc. they will be given verbal praise and a happy stick. They will place their happy stick in the pocket behind their name in the chart. When we take our earn breaks we will count our happy sticks. The amount of happy sticks we have will tell us what we earn. I have included multiple ways for you to display the earn choices to your students.

You can have a poster version displayed for the whole group, with three variations included. You can create an individual page for each student with their earns, with three variations included. Or you can use the clip chart method. I will start the year off with the clip art method. This way the students can place their names on what they have earned. The clip chart method also allows for space to provide a choice for the earn. Right now I have only included the clip chart in a numbers version. If you have interest in the clip chart with tallies or numbers and tallies, please give me feedback on that.

Once a student counts their happy sticks they will put their name clip on the correct spot. This will show them what they get to do or what they have earned.

I truly wish that I had the opportunity to implement this system before I introduced it to you, but I know that teachers like to prep things over the summer and wanted you to be able to start out with this system from Day 1 if it interests you. I plan to update on how this works out once the school year starts. Knowing what I know about classroom management and behavior, I'm really thinking this will be successful.

For every negative you should have 3 positives. Using the happy sticks paired with that positive reinforcement will be much more concrete for my kiddos than saying "move your clip up!" Working breaks into our day to earn items will also be beneficial to my students.

If this system interest you, you can purchase it on either TpT or TN. If you have any other questions, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do not hesitate to ask them!

Also make sure that you check out the other awesome behavior management ideas from the classroom linky by Freebielicious authors. It's week #5 (how is it week 5 already?!) and the theme is classroom management! Mel D. is the host this week so you can find the linky on her blog.



Michelle said...

I don't use a clip chart either!! I feel like I'm the only one!! Tried it, HATED it, won't go back to it!!

Erin Lukas said...

I definitely think the clip chart is a great thing. It works amazingly in our kinder classrooms, it's just a hard concept for our special needs pre-schoolers. I'm excited about this new system though!

Jessica Goodrow said...

Good luck with your new system. I used a clip chart last year for the first time, basically because we made these really cool guitars for our rock and roll theme, but I hated it and will not be using it this year. I don't know what I'll be using, but not that :)


Anonymous said...

I'm so glad I'm not the only one who tried the clip chart and decided it wasn't for me or my kids!!! :) I use to do a very similar technique as the smile sticks but called them "Good Guy Sticks." I loved them and so did the kids. I am going back to them this year and I'm getting this awesome pocket chart! That is a great way to manage them. My kids use to have to put them in their cubbies but that was a management nightmare because they were always losing them because they would fall out all over the floor. After they earned 10 they could exchange them for a trip to the treasure chest. I'm excited to change it up a little with the various rewards. Thanks for sharing!!!!

Miss Kindergarten said...

I love this!!! Can't wait to hear how it goes!

Tonya said...

I love positive behavior systems! I hate the clip chart or the stop light system!!!

Cant wait to read how this goes for you!

Tonya’s Treats for Teachers

Sarah said...

Funny! I also felt like I had to be the only 1 not using the clip concept either! I just doenst work for me! I do LOVE LOVE the idea of them earning sticks and working toward a goal! Cant wait to follow along and see how it goes!

Trail and Error = good teachers ....right?!

Erin Lukas said...

Thank you all so so much for the feedback! I promise to update on how it goes! It's also nice to hear that some other teachers have found the clip chart not to be a fit for them. Glad I'm not the only one :)

KinderMyles said...

I like your award chart where you can change the rewards. I love that you are changing with the needs of your students. Thank you for sharing your happy sticks. This chart is a great way for them to collect the stick without keeping on tables or desks. They get the immediate feedback with the stick and a reward later. So developmental.

EJ said...

Great idea! If you want to make a similar chart (instead of buying one) it's easy to do so using those library pockets. They even have fun colored ones you could use!

Miss May said...

What a super duper idea!!!


Jessica G said...

I started this with my SPED preschool students on the second week of school and they absolutely loved it. It took a few sticks to get the hang of it, but they picked it up quickly and would work insanely hard to get them. The choice after counting the sticks has just been a bonus to them. They light up each time they just get a stick, and we have nearly cut the edibles entirely except for stronger reinforced activities like potty training.

Erin Lukas said...

That is SO awesome Jessica! Thank you so much for sharing that feedback! I've been doing it with my students as well. They all have the hang of putting their sticks away. I did the same earn for all students for the first 2 weeks just so they knew the routine- we count the sticks, we get the earn. Today was our first day with different levels of earn and having a choice between the 2 items. They loved it! I just need to get into the routine of handing out more and more sticks!

Mrs. P said...

If you don't want to buy the pocket chart you can always pick up one of those over-the-door shoe organizers!! They are usually pretty cheap at the dollar store.

Unknown said...

Do you take away happy sticks for negative behavior or just ignore it? And will you explain for each negative you have three positives. Thank you :)

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