Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Non-tangible reinforcement ideas!

Since many of us are sadly aware that a sticker for good behavior does not excite 8th grade boys (don't know why, stickers excite me and I'm much older), here is a list of reinforcement ideas to use with older kids (I'd say 6th grade and up). Hopefully some of these ideas will be helpful not only to other psychologists when behavior planning, but also for teachers. Many are simple, easy things to do, and all of them are "non-tangible," meaning that it's a special reward or privilege, not a specific item (snack, candy, etc). You can even give this as a reinforcement menu to kids, where they can tick off things they would like to receive for reinforcement.
  •  Lunch with a peer of your choice in a private room (e.g., not in cafeteria).
  • Lunch with a teacher of your choice
  • Sit in the teacher’s chair for the day
  • Choose to sit where you want in a class for 1 period (this class only) or until there is a disturbance
  • No homework pass
  • 30 mins. computer time at the end of the day/period
  • Help teacher with an activity
  • Pass out materials/collect papers
  • Tutor younger students in a subject area of your choice
  • 20 minutes free time to _________   at the end of the day
  • Listen to iPod for ___ minutes at the end of the class/school day
  • Have my grade in ___ curved up ___ point(s)
  • Certificate of merit  
  • Morning announcement indicating student of the week
  • Attend an additional gym class this week
  • Help younger peers in gym class, reading or math group
  • Help engineer or custodian for a given period in the day
  • Two free items on the next quiz in a subject area of your choice
  • Permission to do every other item on quiz or homework assignment
  • Reserving table in the cafeteria for a select group of friends
  • Special seat on the school bus for the week
  • Opportunity to help with morning announcements
  • Positive phone call home from your favorite teacher
  • Positive phone call home from your favorite administrator
  • Participate as a teacher assistant     
What other ideas of reinforcement do you have to share? Any good non-tangible ideas? What works in your building or with your students? Do you have a particular "go to" reinforcer that your students go nuts for?

Don't forget to check out and "Like" my Facebook page!


  1. These are great ideas!!! I especially like the extra gym class incentive-thanks for sharing!

  2. Thanks, friend! Sometimes we don't need to think up elaborate reinforcement schedules with stellar rewards. Sometimes kids just want to do laps in the gym! :)

  3. What great ideas! Love them!


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.