Monday, December 8, 2014

Classroom Management Life Savers and FREEBIE

December is fun, but man it wipes me out!  These kids are pumped full of candy canes and hot cocoa!  Who wants to work when there are fun decorations and presents in your near future?  To be honest, most of the time I would rather be home wrapping presents and eating cookies!  I know my kids would, too.  Behavior management is serious business.  ESPECIALLY this time of the year!  That is why I am SO excited to tell you about my newest creation:  Classroom Management Life Savers!  Pretty serious name, huh?  Don't worry!  It lives up to the name!

  What is this?  
This is a behavior management system that you run on your board.  You do not need a smartboard to run this. Any projector will work.  I strongly recommend a wireless mouse, keyboard, or presentation clicker.  This will allow you to use the program from any where in the room.  You can redirect students with the push of a button.  It doesn’t matter if you are on the phone, talking to your principal, working with a small group, or testing students.  One click and your whole class is back on track!

Why I made this:
I have a marble jar in my classroom.  When the jar is full, we vote on a class reward.  I would often give my students challenges like “If you can pack-up quietly, you will earn 10 marbles.”  As they cleaned, I would count down.  “Now it is worth 9 marbles.” And so on.  This works SO well for me at clean-up time.  The problem is, I can’t do it while multi-tasking.  When I am running a reading group, I forget what number we are on.  I hate interrupting my readers to re-direct the rest of the class.  Now, my board does it all for me.  

How to use it:
Just start the slide show and do your thing!  These are great to use for a specific period of time (not the same one running all day).  I love these during reading groups.  Each PowerPoint gives the class a goal.  In Take Away Tools, the goal is to keep the objects (marbles, gingerbread men, etc.)  In Build Tools, the goal is to gain pieces to create a picture. The students must try to reach the goal before our next transition.  

About Take Away Tools:
Take away tools  count down and deter negative behaviors.  We always start with 10.  If my students get too noisy or are off-task, I just click the mouse .  One object will disappear and a chime signals the class that they have lost one object.  This sound reminds them to get back on-task.  YOU don’t have to say a word!  I love this because I can use it while I am working with small groups and don’t need to interrupt my group at all.  One click and they students are refocused.  I use Take Away tools along with my marble jar.  However many objects are left determines the number of marbles the class earns.  It can also be used as a consequence.  For example, if my students lose all of the objects, they lose recess or a fun activity.  I call this “Plan B”.  You never want to have a “plan B day”.  Plan A is always much more fun!  

About Build Tools:
I believe that positive reinforcement works much more effectively than negative, so I also created Building Tools.  With the Build Tools, positive behavior is rewarded by creating a picture.  When I catch them all working on-task, I click to give them a piece of a picture.  I tell my students that if they reach the goal by the end of our reading groups, they will earn a reward.  This can be a small treat like an M&M (yes, they do get excited about ONE M&M!), “take your shoes off” until our next transition, extra minutes of recess, everybody moves their clip up, or marbles for our jar.  These are just a few ideas.  I like to change it up on them all the time so it is new and fresh.  If it gets boring, it will lose its effectiveness. 

About the Files:
To keep students engaged, I like to switch themes often.  I have named the files to make them easy for you to find.  Themes that can be used anytime (like pirates, marble jar, fish, and aliens) have names that begin with 0.  All monthly themes are named with the number of the month followed by the name.  For example, Santa will be used in December.  December is the 12th month, so this file will be called 12- Santa.  If you are looking for St. Patrick’s Day themes, they will start with 3 because March is the third month.  
This is an expanding file.  I will continue adding new themes until this has a minimum of 40 to give you a new theme each week.  If you have a class theme that is not included, please message me and I will try to add it for you.  You can reach me at or via my facebook page if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions.  I would love to hear from you!  

I am so excited about these that I want to let my blog followers have a set for FREE!  This exclusive link is not listed anywhere else!  Click here to download your own Build a Santa Tool.  
This full set will continue to rise in price as more themes are added.  The sooner you buy, the lower the price.  Check out the full set by clicking here.  

Thanks so much for visiting my blog and reading about my newest treasures.  I hope they save your sanity during this holly, jolly time of year!  


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