MAT Blog

Give Your Kids a Shout-Out With Our Student Appreciation Sheet

Posted by Marygrove MAT on Oct 7, 2014 10:06:14 AM

Few things are as pleasing as receiving appreciation—especially when it comes from someone we respect. Appreciation has the power to energize us, rekindle our enthusiasm and restore commitment and confidence.

Whether or not our students would dare to admit it, we know that our appreciation means something to them; the way their faces light up when we recognize them shows it!  

To recognize our students who go beyond the call of duty, we designed “You Deserve a Shout-out,” a free student appreciation sheet!

To download the high-resolution PDF file, click here.

Student_Appreciation_You_Deserve_a_Shout-Out

 

Tags: student recognition, student engagement, student appreciation

9 Ways Students Can Develop a Growth Mindset

Posted by Ryan O'Rourke on Apr 14, 2014 11:55:00 AM

Last week, Larry Ferlazzo reblogged a photograph of a growth-mindset chart he came across on Twitter. I liked so much that I decided to reformat it into a printable version. To save, simply right click on the image and "save as."

Growth Mindset






New Call to action

Tags: student recognition, student leadership, mindfulness in the classroom, mindfulness exercises, student independence, student engagement, motivation, growth mindset

Student Leadership and the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Posted by Marygrove MAT on Jan 15, 2014 9:19:00 AM

student leadershipWe recently came across an article featuring Muriel Summers, an elementary principal who is perhaps best known for the Leadership Model Program she used to transform A.B Combs Elementary from a struggling school into the number one magnet school in the country.

You can read more about the Leadership Model she used by clicking here, but we’d like to share seven of the basic tenants of the program below. We have a feeling that both students and teachers could benefit from reading them.

Student Leadership and the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Habit 1: Be proactive
I am a responsible person. I take initiative. I choose my actions, attitudes and moods. I do not blame others for my wrong actions. I do the right thing without being asked, even when no one is looking.

Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind
I plan ahead and set goals. I do things that have meaning and make a difference. I am an important part of my classroom and contribute to my school’s mission and vision.

Habit 3: Put First Things First
I spend my time on things that are most important. This means I say no to things I know I should not do. I set priorities, make a schedule, and achieve my goals. I am disciplined and organized.

Habit 4:
I balance courage for getting what I want with consideration for what others want. I make deposits in others’ Emotional Bank Accounts. When conflicts arise, I look for third alternatives. I look for ways to be a good citizen.

Habit 5: Seek First to Understand
I listen to other people’s ideas and feelings. I try to see things from their viewpoints. I listen to others without interrupting. I am confident in voicing my ideas. I look people in the eyes when talking.

Habit 6: Synergize
I value other people’s strengths and learn from them. I work well in groups, even with people who are different than me. I seek out other people’s ideas to solve problems because I know that by teaming with others we can create better solutions than can anyone of us alone. I am humble.

Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw
I take care of my body by eating right, exercising, and getting sleep. I spend time with family and friends. I learn in lots of ways and lots of places, not just at school. I take time to find meaningful ways to help others.

If some of Summers’ tenants sound familiar, it may be because they are based off of the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, a professional development series made popular by best-selling author, Stephen Covey.  

 

service learning guide

Tags: student recognition, student leadership, highly effective people, student independence, student engagement

“You Are a Star”: A Quick and Easy Way to Connect with Students

Posted by Marygrove MAT on Oct 31, 2013 1:11:00 PM

connect with studentsOur students all live rich and interesting lives outside the classroom, but often we only see one side of them. There are lots of simple ways teachers can connect with students and learn more about them, but if you’re looking for a new approach, we’ve got one thanks to Diane Mierzwik’s book, Quick and Easy Ways to Connect With Students and Their Parents.

Creating a “You Are a Star” bulletin board is one method Mierzwik uses to learn more about her students, congratulate them, and highlight accomplishments that take place outside of the classroom. Here’s how it works.

Subscribe to the city newspaper
You may not live in the same city as your school, but you can still get your hands on a copy of the monthly city newspaper. Often these publications highlight sporting events, theatre productions and community-service projects that our students are involved in. The school newsletter and newspaper are also good sources of information.

Post the clipping on the “You Are a Star” bulletin board
When you find an article in the paper, clip it out and make a copy of it. Create a bulletin board in class with the heading, “You are a Star.” Post the clipping to the bulletin board with the student’s name highlighted. Don’t make a big deal about it. Just post it and wait for students to notice.

Write a short note of congratulations
When you hand back papers, give the student the actual clipping and attach a handwritten note congratulating the student. You’ll find that some students are shy and will simply accept the clipping, but others will want to talk about the event, activity or organization more. This is an opportunity for you—and the rest of the students—to learn more about the student.

Ask for students to volunteer clippings and pictures
After you start posting events, odds are that other students will approach you with something they have done so you can add it to the board.  Post them, even if they aren’t “timely” and encourage all of your students to bring in their own artifacts for posting.

Use this information to help students make choices in class
The “Star” bulletin board is not only a great confidence builder, it’s a treasure-trove of information you can use to help guide students’ choices in class. Many times, teachers leave an assignment open-ended so that students can take it in a direction that suits their interests. Of course, we’re then faced with, “I don’t know what to do.” If you know your students’ interests, though, you can help guide their choices.

Something to keep in mind
If you have trouble finding articles that feature your students, you can still create a “You Are a Star” board; you’ll just have to take a different approach. Start with students writing a journal entry about something they have done extremely well outside of school. This can be followed by a writing activity that asks students to share their “star” moment as if it appeared in a newspaper. Use background paper that looks like a newspaper (or use this free newspaper generator app) and leave a space for the student’s entry. After they write their account, students can add a photo to go with their article. The teacher can select one to post to get the ball rolling.

 

Principal Appreciation

Tags: student recognition, struggling students, Classroom Community, Classroom Climate, student independence, student engagement

The Power of Appreciation: Using Brag Tags for Student Recognition

Posted by Marygrove MAT on Jul 2, 2013 10:15:00 AM

student recognitionFew things are as pleasing as receiving appreciation—especially when it comes from someone we respect. Appreciation has the power to energize us, rekindle our enthusiasm and restore commitment and confidence.

Whether or not our students would dare to admit it, we know that our appreciation means something to them; the way their faces light up when we recognize them shows it!  

To recognize our students who go beyond the call of duty, we’ve been getting a little help from our friends over at Boost Promotions. We’re particularly fond of their brag tags: these look a bit like military dog tags, but for kids. You can buy one for nearly every kind of appreciation under the sun:

  • Super Attendancestudent recognition
  • Improvement Award
  • Great Work
  • Student of the Week
  • Sharing
  • Kindness
  • Manners
  • Respect
  • Trustworthy
  • School Pride
  • Anti-bullying
  • Courage and lots more

Each tag is $1.00. You can also customize tags for an extra buck.

If you’re looking for another way to show your students that you appreciate them, you might be interested in giving “brag phone calls” a shot. To learn more about them, check out our blog, An Awesome Classroom Management Strategy You’ve Never Heard of.

 

Download our Free Classroom Management G

Tags: student recognition, classroom management, Classroom Community, Classroom Climate

Subscribe to the Marygrove MAT Blog!

Comments on this Blog Post