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6 Unique Ways to Build Students Up

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As teachers, we understand that not every student will be “the smartest” or the “most gifted.” However, as teachers, we also know just how important it is the celebrate every single child for their ability & effort in a positive way!

True, someone may get their math facts quicker than others or “just get” most of what’s introduced. But, it’s also so important to celebrate the effort students put into those goals – even if they don’t ever “pass.” In my classroom, I celebrate the process as much as the end result.

Here’s a peek at a few simple ways I build my students up!

Prize Machine

As I was wandering around Crate & Barrel loading up my wedding registry, I ran into a giant prize machine in their kid section.  I begged and pleaded if they would sell it to me…and they wouldn’t.

Prize Machine Lucky to Be in First

So, over the next few weeks, I became determined to find a prize machine for my classroom! Amazingly, Sam’s Club sells one {for about 80 bucks}! I ordered it online and it arrived about a week later! {Make sure to use eBates and get cash back to shop!}

I hopped over to eBay and purchased some prize capsules.  You can either buy pre-filled 1″ capsules or just the empty 1″ capsules and load up on goodies at the Dollar Spot! I’ve done it both ways and found it way more fun to shop for stuff on my own!  {Again, make sure to use eBates on eBay so that you earn cashback!} I reuse the little containers.

It’s INCREDIBLE and the kids are absolutely obsessed with visiting the machine!

Prize Machine Lucky to Be in First from Molly Lynch on Vimeo.

Emoji Clip Chart

In order to visit the prize machine, the kids must reach the top of the clip chart {I provide the quarters in a dish!}.
This year I’m using the Emoji Clip Chart and it makes me giggle every time I look at it!
Emoji Clip Chart Black & White Lucky to Be in FIrst

Brag Bracelets

To celebrate effort, I use Brag Bracelets.  They are super simple to manage – just print!Brag Bracelets Lucky to Be in First

When I notice a student making a good choice, I simply wrap a bracelet around their wrist & tape it on!
They proudly wear their Brag Bracelets

Brag Bracelet Super Student Lucky to Be in First

It’s tricky to see a bracelet on tiny little wrists 🙂

Brag Bracelets Birthday Lucky to Be in First

I bought an inexpensive coupon organizer on Amazon to keep these brag bracelets easy to access.

Brag Bracelet Organization Lucky to Be in First

Printable Post-Its

In all my years of teaching, I’ve realized that I have a really hard time doing things consistently.  It takes major effort for me to remember to stamp student behavior charts or even pass out a sticker for awesome behavior each day.

I love super simple ways to let me kiddos know that I think they are awesome.  Naturally, these Printable Post-Its have been lifesavers! I can quickly slap on a positive note to their desk, folder or work to let them know I think they’re the bee’s knees! Printable Post Its Lucky to Be in FirstThey’re quick & easy to print and stash in a drawer for when I need a quick “Yay!” for a student!

I’ve also added a Printable Post-Its {Set Two} because I just can’t get enough puns in my life!

Positive Praises

When I was student teaching, I had an amazing master teacher! I hung on every word she said so that I could learn from the best first-grade teacher out there!

One of the things she tried to do was compliment students using a different phrase or adjective. That idea stuck with me all these years later!

To make it simple, I wrote some of my favorite phrases down.
Click the picture to grab this FREEBIE!
20 Positive Statements for Your Students Lucky to Be in First FREEBIE

Student Shout Out Megaphone

While cruising the Walmart aisles for school supplies, I stumbled on this amazing megaphone! I quickly ran home and pulled out my Cricut to write something fun. I added a few random pieces of ribbon I had and VOILA…all this adorableness!

Student Shout Out Megaphone Lucky to Be in First

When I catch a student doing something great, I plan to announce it to the whole class! So fun, right?

Stamp It Out!

A quick & easy way to recognize great student work is with a fun stamp!

My students go nuts for our Lucky Stamps! It’s amazing what a punny little teacher stamp will do to motivate your kiddos!
Your Teacher Likes This Lucky to Be in First

When we do Smart Cookie Math, I always stamp their pages with my “You’re One Smart Cookie” stamp if they pass the level! It could also be used to grade any papers where you’d like to show your students you think they rock!

Smart Cookie Stamp Lucky to Be in First

How do you let your students know they are awesome?

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