Saturday, September 10, 2011

Behavior Buddies

Need I say chatty? Definitely verbal. Social creatures. Friendly. But...all of these traits leaves a problem when I actually want my first graders to listen and learn! So...a few changes.

  • Simplify.  As in--remove any distractions. So my neat storage in the group desks
became:  simply smooth.

  • Minimize. Three groups  into four. Less kids might lead to less ability to be distracted.

  • Prioritize from negatives to positives.
I was using the stop light system. I was ready to move to a more graduated behavior system but a teacher friend tried "desk buddies". Beanie Babies that are chosen each morning. Desk Buddies that have to be good listeners. We made a chart showing what good listeners do. And Desk Buddies need to be quiet. They need to be still. They need to keep their hands paws to themselves. I was doubtful but desperate! (Did I mention ADHD?) But desperate measures lead to anything is worth a try! And it was amazing. These kids love being able to choose their desk buddy and keep it on their desk, take it to their book nook for reading. You might think they would keep their hands on it but for some reason they haven't! And--I just ignored the stoplight system. If a message indication needed to be given--I just walked over and yanked removed that Desk Buddy right off the desk and quietly placed it back in the basket. No moving of clip. No moving to yellow or red. And the kids commented when we went out to play--no one is on red! Funny kids. They were changing their behavior but in a totally different manner.

Next week we are going to work a little more on behavior with David Shannon books. Thanks to this, I am ready to talk about our Peacemakers vs Peacebreakers. The First Grade Parade blog  (Cara) shared this the other day and I love the idea. The kids love the books and our school district calls no bullying EPIC. Great idea from another great blog!


  1. Where did you get your Beanie Babies...I have a bunch of chatting ones too this year. I have tried everything. Please email me.

  2. I just had the Beanie Babies already. You can find them on EBAY, garage sales, etc.

  3. What a wonderful idea! If the beanie baby is taken do they get their beanie baby back or do they have to wait until the next day?