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Assessment

Creating Motivated and Confident Learners by Celebrating Success

Haylie Taylor Haylie Taylor   |   13/03/2020

Do you remember when you were at school and you would receive a reward for doing great work? We probably all remember a time when this happened to us and we had a sense of bursting pride from it. This also helped with our confidence, instilled more of a love of learning, and may even have led to what we do as a job now.

In this blog, we’re going to take a look at why we should be celebrating success in the classroom, as well as strategies for doing so, without taking away from that all-important teacher time.

Why We Should Celebrate Success…

To Help Students See That Hard Work Leads to Growth

There needs to be a move away from the thinking that achievement can be based on either ability, others around us or plain good luck. Effort is significant too. Although this is already widely understood, we should be rewarding this over anything to motivate our students. Focusing on this as a tool that underpins achievement will help with students seeing the value of working hard and will help them with putting more effort into their work, which in turn, will improve their outcomes and growth.

To Instil a Love of Learning

You can help your students grow in confidence in so many areas by celebrating their accomplishments. Besides, what’s better to build confidence than being told you’re doing well?

To Motivate Learners with Their Studies

Praise is a major driver in motivating students to work hard and do well. But we need to make sure we’re giving praise that is helpful. We can do this by making sure it’s sincere and genuine, specific and descriptive, to ensure students know where they have done well, but also realistic, so it focuses on specific behaviors.

How We Should Celebrate Success…

Celebrating success must be done well for students to really benefit from its impact. Consider implementing the following into your praise:

  • Focus on the hard work and effort rather than just the achievement when praising students.
  • Make sure you clearly point out who is being celebrated and the reason why.
  • Give more background information about performance.
  • Make sure praise is transparent and varied.

Strategies for Celebrating Success

It’s true that there are many schools with their own Behaviour Policy in place that details rewards or what to do when there’s negative behaviour. However, it may be worth reviewing some of this policy to help with motivation and creating confident learners.

Create Postcards for Parents/Carers

This is a personal reward, but you could send home postcards to say “well done” for something – this will help engagement and the home school link. You can make these yourself and print them out. Sometimes, students won’t come home and shout about their successes, so these are a great idea for you to do something to show great work.

Share Any Successes on Social Media

Does your class or school have a social media page? We know these are very popular! You could post photos or messages of your students’ work to show parents and celebrate success; this is a great way of improving parental engagement and quickly sharing fantastic work with a wider audience too.

Set Up a Special Treat or Lunch

When your whole class has done fantastic work, as a special reward, at lunch, you could give your students passes, or Golden Tickets, to a separate table and maybe even have teachers serve them ! This will make them feel very special and set them apart from their peers – plus, other students will see which will inspire them to want to try and aim for that treat too!

Don’t forget that on Exact Path, you can also set up Challenges which mean you can put a ‘special lunch’ as a reward for skills completed or time spent on learning paths. Our report from Century Analytics shows that students who complete just eight lessons on Exact Path demonstrate significant growth, so this is a great way to improve outcomes.

Celebrating success is a great idea for so many reasons – success looks different for every student, so taking time to highlight this can help with motivation, confidence and class morale. So how do you celebrate success in your classroom? Let us know in the comments below.

Haylie Taylor

Education Consultant

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