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Re: Art rewards for junior high (SAX?)


From: Bunki Kramer (bkramer_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Fri Jun 29 2001 - 11:12:41 PDT

from: Bunki Kramer (
Los Cerros Middle School
968 Blemer Road
Danville, CA 94526
art webpage -
>>What kind of positive rewards do you have for junior high kids? I am
>> looking>>for ways to reward kids who are doing things right- behaving,
>> participating,>>trying hard, getting projects done on time. I want to make
>the subject>> matter>>itself the reward if possible- but I did resort to gel
pens as prizes one> day.

At this point in the conversation I have no clue who wrote this...but I'd
like to comment.

Close to us there is a store called BOSWELL's. It's a store where you can
buy party supplies and fun stuff like party favors R-E-A-L-L-Y cheap. I'm
sure alot of you have a store like this fairly close to you.

I buy packages of "things" like keychains, pencils, "jacks" sets, fun
earasers, puzzle squares, plastic rings, bracelets, etc. that come in bags
of 25 or 50 for about $2.00 each bag (right out of my budget $$$). All these
go into a black cauldron I got for Halloween which sits on my file cabinet.
When I see someone "doing something extra without being asked", they get to
fish for a prize in the cauldron. I never mention it to the class but the
buzz happens and they take notice. I don't do it often so it's become very
special to get. It's amazing how excited they get over a little cheap
toy...much more than a piece of candy. I even used the prizes when I taught
teachers for professional growth classes and they were thrilled to win a
prize toy...figure that one out.

I thought, when I first began, that the 8th grade boys would be way too cool
to get excited over this so I looked for really good "boy" stuff and found
skateboard keychains, tiny monster toys, etc. Well...Lordy...they fancied
the rings and bracelets. So my point is...they go for ANYTHING.

Personally I wouldn't reward them for class participation or finishing work
on time, or trying hard which is what they are SUPPOSED to be doing
anyway...and kids know that. I use my toys mostly for character
building...going the extra mile...being a good citizen. Your enthusiasm and
projects will entice them enough to participate and "nagging" works wonders
on those late finishers. Use your rewards sparingly and they'll be worth


PS...I just thought of something. Maybe SAX could also offer a bag of mixed
cheap toys like this and call it something like "Teacher Toys".
Hummmm....pantyhose and toys.