25 April 2013

Playing School: Using Badges and Achievements for PBIS

Thanks to +Keith Sorensen for the great badge summary post that sparked this one! If you're not familiar with uses of badges to reward achievement in Scouts, the military, and even videogames, head on over there, first.
Badges work well into PBIS strategies, as well. 
The purpose of PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports) is to craft a welcoming, positive school culture in which students doing the right things are noticed and rewarded, as opposed to traditional behavioral strategies that highlight the bottom 10% and heap upon them punitive damages.

We give out tickets at my high school that can be redeemed for stuff, but I wonder if badges would be cheaper (most of the rewards cost the school something) and perhaps even more "meaningful" because peers will know WHY a student got that badge instead of the generic tickets we hand out.
I like the idea of the tickets, and perhaps the staff gives out more of them because they can be given more on a whim ("Hey, what you just did was great. Here's a ticket."), but I can't help wonder how effective they really are.
If you use EdmodoKhan Academy, Manga High, or even Study Island, badges and achievements are built right in (to varying degrees), so you wouldn't even need a new service, if if you want one, Keith highlights Class Badges in his post.
There are more than a thousand badges already created for you to apply to your own classroom content or goals, and if you make your own (just like you can in Edmodo), the possibilities are endless!  I searched only in the "math theme" and got more than 100.
There are 4 more pages of this gold.
I haven't set up classes yet, but in less than 5 minutes, I was able to set up my account and create my first badge for what we're doing in Algebra 2 right now (which I wrote about here)

Do you have an "A" wall, or a star wall where students get to put their good assessments or projects? If you didn't want to use electronic badges, it would be pretty simple to make your "A" wall a badge wall and be more specific about your achievements. 


  1. Thanks for the shout-out,Chuck! I like your application of class badges to your PBIS program.

  2. My pleasure! As stated, you did the dirty work with that badges post. :)


Thanks for sharing!