Another favorite thing, that I love, love, love is the Clip Chart. During one of my most difficult teaching years with a rather challenging class, I used the typical old green, yellow, red stop sign system for behavior. It didn’t work. My kids that were difficult were on red by 8:30 and were stuck there so they continued to have a hard day. This was rather frustrating as a teacher and frustrating for students as well.
After this difficult year, I was having a hard-time getting in the teacher back-to-school spirit, so I started researching new behavior ideas. While researching I stumbled upon the Clip Chart by New Managment. I read through the e-book that is on their website and fell in love with the idea of the Clip Chart system. Gone are the days of kids being stuck for making one bad choice. Gone are the days of the good kids always being on green when they are always the ones going above and beyond to make good choices. Gone for me were the days of focusing on the negative behavior going on in my classroom.
I implemented the Clip Chart system two years ago in my classroom and got one of the other first grade teachers on board. The main point of the clip chart is if a student makes a bad choice they clip down. If a student makes a good choice they can clip up. Students aren’t stuck on one level or another and can move up and down the chart throughout the day. Also instead of one or two levels, there are multiple levels above and below. And the best part of all – it works! Instead of focusing on what the kids are doing wrong, I was spending more time trying to find the positive and what the kids were doing right, which leads to clipping up. I noticed a huge change in the kids too. They weren’t tattletaling as much (which is a huge step for first grade). Instead of tattling to me about something they saw a student do wrong, kids were telling me about something good they saw another child doing.
The beauty of the Clip Chart is you don’t need prizes or treasure box items. If a student reaches purple (Outstanding) on the chart, they get to add a jewel to their clothespin. Once their clothespin is full of jewels, they get to take it home. Now, I know you’re probably thinking do kids really care about a jewel? They do! The jewel to them is like winning the lottery – they love it!
This Clip Chart has changed the way I teach and manage a classroom. Most teachers at my school have also started using it in all grade levels and also see the benefits. I hope it can help you as well!
Below you will see a picture of the Clip Chart and clips that I use. I bought the stick-on jewels at JoAnn’s.