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).