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raised hands


From: Bunki Kramer (bkramer_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sat Feb 22 2003 - 10:09:14 PST

from: Bunki Kramer (
Los Cerros Middle School
968 Blemer Road
Danville, CA 94526

>From: J & M Bolyard <>
> Hey Thanks for the replies on motivation! Keep them coming.
> I have to tell you ,as long as we are on motivation. that I did Art
> Dollars for years(like Mona bucks)
> and decided to stop them this year after taking this course on
> motivation. Some of the kids do miss them, but I'm really trying to
> encourage more intrinsic motivation. This does not mean I will never
> go back to them, but trying something different.

My goodness. Your whole posting sounds like it's coming out of my mouth. I
used something like "color cents" paper money for a few years when first
teaching but I found them not that workable for ME (and that certainly is no
reflection on those who do it today...just not workable for me). The
"instant" gratification of something else like "feel good" or a prize
accomplished more for me as a child motivator. It didn't work for me
teaching math either. Maybe I approached it wrong...I dunno...but it wasn't
effective enough.

>Another thing I
> changed after 10 years is not having them raise hands to answer
> questions. This is going very well.

Teaching middle school, when I ask for feedback or art critique, I don't
have many "takers" at first so I ALSO don't ask for raised hands. I have
found in my classes that the spontaneity seems to get lost if they have to
commit to a raised hand. I rather have a spontaneous burst of enthusiastic
answers than one lone voice out there in the wilderness. For some reason it
doesn't seem that chaotic because there are usually only 5 or 6 who want to
start the ball rolling..then I take over. And you know what? Whenever we do
this, I always have to remind them NOT to raise their hand. Guess I'm
underminding the other teachers (grin).

Probably one of the most useful motivational tools was taught to me by my
daughter who learned it from somewhere and she doesn't teach. Here it
is....try it out.

When you ask a question, state it. See how many people raise their hands.
Next...ask another question and this time raise your hand at the same time.
Now you will see way more hands go up. I'm guessing just seeing your hand
raised prompts them to also want to do what you do and takes some fear out
of raising the hand. Interesting concept whatever the reason...and it WORKS!