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Classroom Management: My Miracle Motivation Plan

Charity Preston

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Classroom Management: My Miracle Motivation PlanIf you have a classroom with multiple behaviors concerns, it can be tough to head to your job every day.


With the constant disruptions, redirections, and follow-ups, it can take a toll mentally, emotionally, and sometimes even physically! Not to mention the worst part:  learning for other students gets short-changed. 


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The million-dollar questions is:  How do you get some of those out of control classes back into a cohesive unit ready to learn?


I've found great success with my behavior management system based on individual students' motivations. Here's how the Miracle Motivation Program works:


Find the Motivation

Maybe you have tried everything, from a token management system, to flipping cards, to rewarding with candy – and sometimes it works.  But when it doesn’t, it is really frustrating! 


I noticed the same thing in my classroom, and finally came to the realization after reading the book The Motivation Breakthrough: 6 Secrets to Turning On the Tuned-Out Child by Richard Lavoie, that students (like adults) are all motivated by different reasons.


Mainly, there are 6 motivational “styles”:

  • Prizes (candy, stickers)
  • Prestige (name announced on the announcements)
  • Power  (getting to be the teacher’s helper, line leader)
  • Projects (choice of learning activities)
  • People (extra recess, working in a group with friends)
  • Praise (high five, verbal recognition)

If you know the child’s motivation, life at school (and at home) can become amazingly easier for all! 


Adults are the same way – we are all motivated by different means and will work hard for completely different reasons. Some would work for more money, while others would do it for recognition – among other things. If only one choice was given by administration, only a certain percentage would work hard to hit the goal. 


Personalize Punch Cards

My behavior system has changed drastically since implementing my Motivation Miracle Program.  Now, I use punch cards for each student and individualize their goals based on their personal motivation.  Once the punch card is filled up, they earn their chosen goal and choose another. 


Organize & Implement Behavior Program

By keeping all the punch cards hung up on a bulletin board from o-rings and push pins, the entire class gets a visual reminder every day to work towards an individual goal.  Now, it is much easier to get homework returned, stay on task, and not shout out.


The program is also positive reinforcement in that the punches are given for demonstrating more of the behavior we want to see. I can customize what the children earn punches for if I notice one student who has been working particularly hard on something that does not come easy.  Or if I see that one student hasn’t shouted out for two minutes (sometimes that is a miracle in itself!). Maybe a gifted student has begun to slow down and check through his or her work – and not just race through to be done.  All of these small milestones deserve recognition.


Witness Learning in Full Force

Behavior management is so much easier when the students take the ownership of their own choices and incentives in your classroom! Redirection on your part is also much easier – just silently gesturing to the bulletin board where the punch cards hang usually does the trick. 


Of course, you will still have disruptions – it wouldn’t be a school without them!  But, perhaps you won’t dread walking into that door each day knowing that your students will be learning, will be on task, and will be motivated to do it on their own.  Have fun!


What other miraculous behavior management programs or strategies have you found? Share in the comments section!


For more a printable version of her Motivation Miracle Program, Charity Preston shares it free to all newsletter subscribers You can sign up for the free newsletter on the right sidebar of any page. After entering your email address, confirm your subscription from your email inbox, and the first newsletter will have all the relevant printables.