Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Beyond the Clip Chart...How I Use Behavior Contracts

I've posted before about how I use my clip chart. I love the clip chart! It is fabulous! It's amazing what happens when I start saying "Hmm I wonder whose clip I can move up". For me, the clip chart works for about 80% of my class. The average student is motivated by the rewards and praise and quickly bounces back from moving their clip down.

But for the other 20% the clip chart may not work all the way. Students who need more behavior support are not going to benefit from constantly moving their clip down. It becomes a pattern and a) they give up and don't care b) you find yourself not wanting to follow through with every move down and c) doesn't provide enough documentation of negative behaviors.

So, how do you motivate those students who need more support to improve their behavior? Well, please believe me when I say I am NO EXPERT on this subject. People have written books about this and I can tell you I haven't read them all. But what I have learned from my humble experience is two things:

1. Students who misbehave frequently need frequent positive reinforcement for desired behaviors.
2. Documentation is essential!

Thus comes the behavior contract. Believe me when I say I have tried many different kinds of behavior charts. I remember coming out of some meetings about students with yet another contract to try and just feeling overwhelmed. I couldn't figure out how to keep track of all of the different ones!

There are now two kinds of contracts that I use in my classroom and I mean it when I say I love them and THEY WORK! Here's why:
~ They provide constant positive reinforcement.
~ The student becomes more responsible by keeping track of their data.
~ The student is motivated by rewards.
~ The reward frequency is easy enough for me to implement without feeling overwhelmed.
~ The covers/themes increase student excitement and engagement.
~ I have constant data on the student's behaviors.
~ They keep parents informed about their child's behavior and allow for parents to also reward their child at home.

So after developing two kinds of contracts and using them all year in my classroom I decided to make pack of them. This pack includes two kinds of contracts - one for the student who needs to improve one or two behaviors and one for the student who needs to improve multiple behaviors. Check it out in my store!

It's on sale today for the teacher appreciation sale. Don't forget to enter the code TAD13 at checkout! 

In honor of teacher appreciation I'm going to do a giveaway of the Behavior Contracts Pack. Enter below! I'll pick and announce a winner on Sunday. :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have a great rest of your week!


  1. I use a clip hall of fame as well and my kids love it! And I agree there are some monkeys who need a ton of positive reinforcement to stay on track! Great behaviour contracts!

  2. my favorite teacher was my first grade teacher. we had a plastic swimming pool in her room for us to read in. :)

    1. How fun! If I didn't move classrooms I would love to have a bathtub or tent for my kiddos to read in.

  3. I love the idea of a clip hall of fame. I am going to add this to my management! Thanks. I'm a new follower.

    Hunter's Tales from Teaching

  4. Hey I just found you blog through a different giveaway. I am excited that I found this one too. My favorite teacher was my 5th and 6th grade teacher. I looped with her that year. She had a ton of wonderful activities and I remember having a lot of fun in her classroom.

    Ms Richards's Musings

    1. Welcome Krystyn! My favorite teacher was my 5th grade teacher too! She was a little eccentric - she wore a neon pink or purple leotard every day - but she was so much fun and made me want to be there every day!

  5. I had a teacher who buried a lot of old looking artifacts and had us discover what we thought was the remnants of an older civilization! We were so excited to learn and discover new things! Think it was 5th or 6th grade. Great blog and giveaway!

  6. Hi Julie, these look cute and I agree- the positive reinforcement is really the only thing that works. I'm a new follower :)

  7. This is great! I will be a first year teacher next year (3rd grade) and the school is adopting the behavior ladders. I have been researching them, so this is wonderful to supplement that.

  8. My favorite teacher was my 3rd grade teacher - she taught us to care about the environment, I still think of her today when I teach recycling lessons! I'm your newest follower!

    Science for Kids Blog

  9. One of my favorite teachers was my 5th grade teacher. I remember reading lots of books and doing lots of Science experiments!!

  10. My 5th grade teacher, Mrs. Bloomfield! She was stern, yet fun. She meant business and I learned so much from her! We stay in touch still and she even came to my wedding!

  11. My favorite teacher was my 3rd grade teacher, Mrs. Lindeman. She had high expectations, but made learning fun with lots of educational projects. I loved her class!

  12. One of my favorite teachers was my 7th and 8th grade math teacher. She used to make us get up and do stretches when we looked tired. She helped me after school when I struggled in her class. And she was always laughing with me - joking, teasing, playing around. I always knew she cared about me and I could go to her for anything.

  13. One of my favorite teachers was my 2nd grade teacher. I was in a split 2nd/3rd class. Even with all of the chaos of 2 classes in one, this teacher took the time to make me feel as if I stood out and was special. She always took a special effort for me and I certainly felt it.

  14. My favorite teacher was my 3rd grade teacher, which is why I always wanted to teach 3rd grade. She both scared the heck outta me and motivated me to do my best! Thanks Ms. Wesley!!