May 14, 2013

Teacher Tip Tuesday: Classroom Management Apps

Today's Teacher Tip is a comglomeration of some of the incredible ideas I've gotten from linky parties as well as Pinterest boards.

Since my school year is essentially over (we have half days tomorrow and Thursday for finals, and then the students are done!), I'm planning to use this in my classroom next year. But I still wanted to share the idea now for those of you who are looking for a little end-of-the-year management help.

I downloaded this app to my iphone and ipad called Decide Now (99 cents in itunes). It's basically a big Wheel of Fortune style wheel, and when you touch the center button, it spins.

Here's how I plan to use this:

I'm going to use my Name Selector app (free in itunes) to randomly choose a student during a given activity. This can really be done during any activity: note-taking, centers, group/pair work, visiting the library, walking in the hallways, etc. Keep the name of your chosen student a secret, only to be revealed during your next transition.

During the given activity, I will be in super stealth mode, watching my chosen student. If (s)he has followed my expectations for the duration of the activity, (s)he will get to spin my Wheel of Prizes.

As you can see from my photo, I'm planning to use each wedge of my wheel to indicate a reward. The important thing here (so you don't go broke) is to include free and very-inexpensive rewards, but you can keep things interesting by adding some bigger items. I can't remember who originally suggested this, but I think my middle school students would get a kick out of seeing some "whammy" prizes like a paperclip or a single sticky note.

If, during the duration of the given activity, the chosen student is not following my expectations, however, I will simply choose a new student. Of course, I will make a big show of doing this, so all students are reminded that I'm watching.

I think this will be a good way to motivate positive behavior, reward those that make good choices (another solution for the problem I discussed last week), and give a non-verbal cue to those who are off-task (my Name Selector app makes a noise when a name is chosen).

24 comments:

  1. Love this. I think the kids would enjoy the virtual version just as much as the real thing! I also like the free rewards you chose.
    Erin
    I'm Lovin Lit

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  2. This is such a great idea... I know my kids would LOVE it! I'm definately going to give it a show next year- Thanks!

    Michelle
    The Organized Señorita

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  3. I love that there is a name selector app and this wheel of prizes is digital. I have pinned it for future reference. Thank you so much for sharing! Could you do me a favor and link back to my post when linking up to Tried It Tuesday? :)
    ~Holly
    Fourth Grade Flipper

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    1. OMG! I think I was just being lazy and linked back to the post I wrote for my own weekly instead of adding that I was linking up. So sorry! I'll be sure to do that next week!

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  4. What a cool app and a super cool way to use it. Thanks for sharing! :)
    Brandee @ Creating Lifelong Learners

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  5. This looks like a fun app. I will have to check it out. Thanks for sharing!

    Hunter's Tales from Teaching

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  6. Never seen this before but it looks great and I will check it out.

    Jessica
    Literacy Spark

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  7. I love this idea- definitely going to use it in the fall. Thanks for sharing!

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  8. That's pretty cool- cant wait to use it when school starts back!

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  9. Thank you so much for sharing! What is the name of the "wheel of prizes" app? I can't seem to find it.
    Thanks, www.rhythmandglues.wordpress.com

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  10. What an awesome idea! Thank you for sharing.

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  11. I am also looking for the app and can't find it. What is it's name? Thanks!

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  12. I also can't find the app. What is it's name? Thanks!

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  13. I would love to use this app but I couldn't seem to find the name of it in your blog. :(

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  14. I found a similar app called "Caught Being Good" which was obviously made for parents and children, rather than students and children. It's 99 cents and you can customize the frequency certain rewards are chosen (without the kids knowing!)

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    1. Oh, I like that last part because it would allow me to put some "bigger" prizes in the mix since I can control how often they're selected (and how often I have to shell out money for more)!

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  15. Love this idea! I already had the name generator app (or a similar version) from student teaching. As a first year teacher, I'm looking for great management ideas. I think the fun of this app will be half as enjoyable to my students as the reward itself. Thanks!

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  16. What is the reward that ends with kickboard?

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    1. Kickboard was my school's digital PBIS system where we tracked behavior in paycheck form (adding and deducting money throughout the day). The app can be customized to include any rewards that you choose. I highly recommend getting input from your students!

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  17. I would suggest using the online app from Wheel Decide that is free and can be displayed on the projector and smart board. The website is wheeldecide.com. A bit tricky to find the editor, but go down below the display, go past the dynamic wheels and recent list of wheels to find the make your wheel section. Then add your own choices, colors and spin time.

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