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
Similar Strategies
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.

 
Assessment & Data
Remedial Small Group

Remedial small group instruction is a strategy used to address the needs of students who are behind. In order to support students in mastering foundational skills, I pull small groups of students who all require practice with a same skill. We go through a mini-lesson, sometimes using added supports like technology or manipulatives, working to master the skill and allow the student to fully access content taught to the whole group. This strategy is really important for my blended classroom, as I can thus deliver personalized lessons based on the skillsets that students have. 

 
Whole-Group Instruction
Rapid Fire

Sometimes the only thing holding students back is practice time. It's amazing how much they can get done when they get themselves into a work frenzy. During Rapid Fire, we create a "controlled crazy" by playing techno music while students work in pairs to solve as many computation problems as possible in five minutes. This is a great strategy to use before taking the lesson to word problems, and provides a break from sitting quietly and attentively during the lesson. There is also always an element of choice in what the students want to focus on, helping them to adjust their self-evaluation for later on.

 
 
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