Academic Culture

Stamina Captains

Stamina captains track stamina among students at their table throughout independent work. Especially while working on differentiated or individualized practice, students may feel "alone" in their work and thus easily get distracted (whereas they might feel more pressure if all students are working on the same exact practice). Thus, through emphasizing the skill of stamina, students constantly think about their level of focus and ability to avoid distractions. When students begin discussing something that is off-topic, the stamina captain will write down their name on a post-it. After that, those students get a chance to "fix" their behavior by getting back on task. If their stamina is not fixed, they then get a phone call home as a consequence for their lack of focus. Through this closed loop, parents and students understand their focus and work at school.

Strategy Resources (4)
Strategy Explanation
 
 
This is a Google Form that follows an independent practice session. Students evaluate themselves on their persistence and get a chance to reflect on their work.
Poster
 
 
This poster states the expectations I have for students showing stamina and persistence. Zone 1 means whisper voices.
Poster
 
 
This picture highlights expectations that we are currently focusing on, including stamina. At the beginning of each week, and when needed, we refer to this chart, reminding students of the expectations we have of them.
Poster
 
 
These post-its are generated by "Stamina Captains", who record the stamina (and lack therof) they see in other students.
Strategy Explanation
 
 
This is a Google Form that follows an independent practice session. Students evaluate themselves on their persistence and get a chance to reflect on their work.
Poster
 
 
This picture highlights expectations that we are currently focusing on, including stamina. At the beginning of each week, and when needed, we refer to this chart, reminding students of the expectations we have of them.
Poster
 
 
These post-its are generated by "Stamina Captains", who record the stamina (and lack therof) they see in other students.
Poster
 
 
This poster states the expectations I have for students showing stamina and persistence. Zone 1 means whisper voices.
Stephen Pham
Rocketship Si Se Puede Academy
San Jose, CA


 

About this strategy

Prep Time:
Moderate
Subject:
Math
Grade:
Fifth grade
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Academic Culture
Class Dojo for Behavior Management

ClassDojo is a free behavior tracking system. I use it everyday to give students feedback on how they're meeting academic and behavioral expectations. As students are given postiive points or "needs work" points, a sound beeps and the entire class hears and sees that a student is being given feedback. Just as with behavior narration, students become more aware about their personal behaviors, following the expectations as they see them reiterated through behavior points. Their scores carry through with them to each class, culminating in a report at the end of the day that goes home to the students' parents. This allows parents to stay in the loop with how students are working and behaving at school. 

 
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This collaborative strategy is simple but effective. Students roam the room finding new questions to answer together, and scan the code with an iPad to check their work. Then, they put all the answers together to unlock a secret code. The use of QR codes in class has greatly improved the effectiveness of student work because of their ability to stop and check their answers. Their enthusiasm for this activity is clear, and making it into a competition of sorts makes it all the more fun.  I utilize the QR codes in everything from directions to links to activities. Still, my favorite use is monitoring groups during QR code breakers. 

 
Instructional Closings
Closing Shout-Outs

At the end of each class period, we spend time celebrating the soft skills students exhibited throughout class. Rather than focusing on academic achievements such as tests, we shout out students who show our core values, such as persistence, responsibility, or empathy. This way students get a chance to recognize one another for their support throught class. This ritual also positively reinforces these values, as students feel successful when they get a shout out.

 
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