At the end of SOME days, I choose children to take a trip to the prize box. It’s an incredible classroom management tool that works WONDERS. (Honestly, whoever said bribery doesn’t work has NEVER worked with children.)
I try to ensure that most kids make a trip at least once a week, and it has really helped some children think about their actions, and how those actions impact others. (Well, at least I pretend that it does.)
At the end of the day today Jackson (aka The Spoon that Stirs the Pot) came up to me and said in a whiny voice, “Why can’t I go to the prize box?”
I looked at him in shock.
“Really? You don’t have any idea at ALL about why you are not going?” I asked surprisingly.
“No!” he said honestly, shrugging his shoulders.
“Well, let me see.
FIRST, you were yelling at the ipad center this morning, and playing on everyone else’s iPad. Then when you turned around to see if I was looking, you knocked the billion-dollar iPad to the floor.
THEN, at the Play Doh center, I saw you putting Play Doh in your mouth, nose and on your eyes. You didn’t see me coming, because your EYES were covered with black PLAY DOH.
THIRD, you were chasing everyone around the track screaming like a banshee when we were doing Track and Snack. The WALKING Track and Snack that we’ve tried to WALK for the last 44 days of school.
FOURTH, you were cocking your pretend rifle and shooting everyone in the cafeteria during lunch. The WHOLE TIME during lunch, according to the four different lunch helpers who tried to convince you to put your “weapon” away.
FIFTH, during my read-aloud after lunch, you decided to throw grenades at everyone throughout the story. And while I might find that amusing if I were teaching an ROTC program, I don’t typically encourage that in kindergarten.
And LASTLY, after all the reminders and attempts at re-directing your energy, you decided to play WWW SMACK-DOWN during recess and might have been the reigning champion if Francis hadn’t come to tattle about what was happening behind the climbing wall. Her bloody lip and wounded pride compelled her to protect the others. I’m pretty sure.
But you know that even ONE of those reasons is enough to get you off the prize box list. All of them TOGETHER earns you something else entirely."
He looked at me. “I get something ELSE? What is it? Is it good?”
“Just let your mom and dad know I’ll be calling tonight. Then tomorrow morning you can tell me if it was good.
Now, hand over the lego man in your pocket, get your coat and backpack and get ready to go. I’m happy to say that his day is FINALLY OVER.”