Wednesday, July 31, 2013

a clip chart. a clippy clippy clip chart.

I feel like I'm finally getting some stuff done for school.  Good thing!  I'm going into school later today to meet up with my favorite kindergarten teacher and go shopping at the only teacher store in the area--I'm super excited, and will definitely share my purchases on the blog!

As I mentioned in my last post, I have been working on my new clip chart and getting all of my clips ready for the year.  I took this...

And turned it into this...

Let me tell you--I ADORE my clip chart.  In my class last year, my kiddos were so motivated to make good choices by the idea of having a "Gold Star" day that I very rarely had students need to clip down.  When students did have to clip down...  oh boy.  I usually saw a pretty quick turn around in their behavior.

It's such a simple system.  You can read all about it in the eBook available (for free) here.  I made some changes for our classroom and for my own tastes, but it is still the same basic idea.

My kiddos start out with regular clothes pins for the first clip.  When they make good choices, they clip up; poor choices, they clip down.  If they clip all the way up to gold, they get a gold star sticker on their clip and a (super coveted) Gold Star card to take home.  When they get five gold stars on their regular clip, they get a red clip.  Once there are five gold stars on that, they get an orange clip.  Then a yellow, and a green, blue and a purple.  After getting five gold stars on their purple clip... they get GOLD GLITTER CLIPS!  Those gold glitter clips are a big deal.  I had three of my sixteen first graders achieve this goal last year.  When they get to that point, I also give them a fancy formal invitation to have lunch with me in the classroom and I bring a special dessert.

For the most part, it's super simple with very limited prep that I have to do.  I don't have a treasure chest or other reward system for the gold star days--just gold star stickers and new clips.  Those new clips were the worst part last year.  I tried dying the clips, and they ended up not quite the vivid shades I wanted--they looked (to me) more like Easter eggs.  So I took each clip apart and colored it with the appropriate Sharpie marker as I needed them.  I decided that this summer, I would work ahead and get ALL of my clips ready before school started.  And while sitting on the couch, watching Pittsburgh Pirate games, I have slowly gotten almost all of them ready!

I needed something wonderful to keep those clips organized, so I used the leftover, scrap paper from the clip chart, my Cricut and some small plastic drawers that I used to store writing tools on my desk in my college dorm (and had been unused since) to do just that.  Got to love "free" projects, right?

I am SO excited to put this on my desk at school and make HUGE deals about moving full clips to the Clip Hall of Fame!

I know quite a few people already use the clip chart system, but in case you are new to it or just want to update the look of yours, I saved the file I used to make mine and made it available (for free!) in my TPT shop.  Just click the image below and it will take you there!

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