Submitted by JoDee, Gilbert, Arizona

Idea posted April 13, 2004

I have been rehearsing for my all-school Spring Concert, and I have had wonderful success with my sixth through eighth graders doing the following:

Throughout the class I pass out lottery tickets to students being quiet, paying attention, and cooperating. I do not announce when I will pass out tickets. The students put their names on the tickets and pass them to the end of their tables for me to pick up. I place the tickets in a clear plastic jar and draw a name as needed or whenever I feel like it.

This has worked like a charm and has been very successful. I bought a small assortment of candy bars from Wal-Mart (ten for $0.87) and have them in a basket. (My principal is very supportive in paying for anything to do with positive discipline.) Sometimes I'll swing the basket around, and that reminds the students about their behavior. After each class I throw away the tickets, and we start over the next class period. I see three classes of sixth through eighth graders once a week for an hour. I have these classes the last hour of the day, and I used to hate that hour. Now I enjoy these classes, because I can teach and make music with them instead of babysitting.

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