The Pebble Jar Returns
I’ve blogged about my classroom pebble jar before but, since I still don’t have my computer back, it is hard to link to them, so if you really want to know, just search my blog.
I decided to do something different with the jar this year. We have about ten distinct sections to our day: journal/morning work, PE/health, science/social studies, computer lab/writers’ workshop, daily CAFE, lunch, read aloud, fine arts/library, math, and today’s topics. At the end do each morning g, we will review how we’ve done with our areas. Students rate themselves on a scale of one to give, with five being great, four is good, three is okay, two is poor, and one is crazy. If the majority of the class gives a rating of four or five, I add a pebble to the jar. The process repeats in the afternoon.
The jar holds 168 pebbles, so we could fill it in a little over three weeks. Or it could take much longer. It will all depend on how the different parts of the day go. While I have veto power, my general inclination will be to accept the students’ ratings. And once a pebble goes in, it can’t come out. Once the jar is full, there will be a whole class celebration.
I like this system because it breaks our long day it manageable chunks and lets the students have a tangible reward for positive behaviour. Today was our first try and it went well. The students earned six pebbles today and know they need to improve focus during the time right before lunch and right before the day ends. It will be interesting to see how tomorrow goes!