Helping Students Stay Positive Despite Hurricane Harvey Set Backs
My students need college themed games, garden gnomes, popcorn, and snow cone supplies for positive behavior incentives to reward them for being respectful, responsible, and ready during this difficult time following Hurricane Harvey.
Our middle school is a Title I school with over 85% of its students receiving free or reduced lunch. Most of our students come from low-income households. Not to mention, many of their homes were devastated by flooding from Hurricane Harvey. Currently, 100% of our students are receiving two free meals per day. Also, our campus was damaged by flooding, and we are sharing our campus with our sister middle school. Because of this, our students are only attending school for half the school day. This has been very challenging for our students.
Despite these hardships, our students come to school with a positive disposition.
When you don't have much to begin with, a devastating natural disaster can be the straw that broke the camel's back. Honestly, I cannot say that about my students. Although most of them are economically disadvantaged and did lose a lot during Hurricane Harvey, they come to school ready to learn. Their resilience is something to be commended and rewarded because even the strongest adults would find it difficult to endure through what they have.
PBIS (positive behavior intervention and supports) is a program at my school that gives the students incentives for displaying respectfulness, responsibility, and readiness, but unfortunately this new program does not have a budget.
During this difficult time, I would really like to provide my students with some rewards for their positive behavior. When facing adversity, it is very easy to become negative and downtrodden, but our students haven't. I feel as though they deserve to be rewarded for that. They deserve to have positive things to look forward to because there is so much good in the world despite the bad.
Every week at my school, teachers reward students by giving them "VIP lunch" where they can cut the lunch line and participate in fun activities. I want to create a space in our outdoor (enclosed) breezeway area that the students can participate in games and fun activities as a reward. I plan on decorating the area as a college-going atmosphere with collegiate garden gnomes. Some of the games are college themed as well. These students would also be rewarded with popcorn and snow cones that they can eat on our benches. The games, snow cone machine, and popcorn machine would also be utilized on our field day to reward students who make the A honor roll, A/B honor roll, and have perfect attendance.
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