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This one, called Class Bank, is to help develop Good Habits, Learner Awareness, and Spelling
Language Arts, Math
3, 4, 5, 6
By – Joan M. Diez
Subject – Language Arts, Math
Grade Level – Grades 3 – 6
Subject Area(s): writing
General Topic(s) or Theme(s):
– Good Habit Acquisition
– Learner Awareness
– Class Management
To make students work hard and teach them good habits such as paying attention and being careful in order to avoid mistakes and improve their performance.
A Class Bank Account Card for each student (see instructions)
Introductory questions to stimulate discussion:
1. Do you feel you are doing your best at school?
2. Do you make mistakes often? If so, why?
3. Do you find it difficult to concentrate and pay attention?
4. Do you often do things in a hurry? Why? Does that help you?
Highlight the advantages of concentrating, paying attention and doing things carefully in class. Students should feel proud of work well done and strive to do better when they are not doing fine.
So your students are on the lazy side? Are YOU the only person who works hard day in day out? Start a class bank right now to avoid disaster at the end of the term!
The idea is to make students aware of the fact that learning a language requires some effort (and that means paying attention in class, taking notes, doing homework and a bit of private study now and again.) If you feel their standards are too low and they do not seem to care, show them that mistakes really matter!
We are all determined to be patient and do our best to motivate our students, but some pupils do not react till they see their grades are severely affected. This activity is designed to ring a bell to those and hopefully make them change their attitude before it is too late. You can always reward those who work properly.
Open an account for every student (a small card with the user’s name and the sections IN/OUT/CREDIT BALANCE will do.) Explain that you are going to follow their moves closely for a while and keep a record of them. They start with 30,000 points each and their account will be charged every time they make a mistake. So they had better watch their grammar, vocabulary, spelling, pronunciation and translation abilities! All mistakes are serious (deduct 100 points), but some are very serious (deduct 1,000 points) and a few are very serious indeed (deduct 10,000 points). Students whose account is overdrawn (spend all their credit) will automatically get lower grades or, if that sounds too strong, they will be given an extra piece of homework, for instance.
Explain which mistakes belong to which category. The following examples of what I mean by very serious mistakes indeed may help you to write your own list:
He speak English; My pencils are longs ; Mary playing tennis; Wrong past forms of most common irregular verbs; Sentences with no subject (e.g. Live in London.)
Whatever your decision is, your students will certainly not like the scheme. Tell them that they can win points too (or rather earn them)… by working hard! This WILL make a difference. Add points to their account whenever you think they deserve them and give them extra grades accordingly. You won’t need your red pens so often from now on!
Discuss the following:
- Does it pay to pay attention?
– Is it worth to do things carefully?
– Do you feel you can do better from now on?
– School and school life
– Adjectives and adverbs
Compare your handwriting and your compositions now with some old samples of your own work. Make sure that you are doing better now! If you are not, ask your teacher for help and guidance!
E-Mail Joan !