Jeremy, thanks for your excellent question. I don't have a straightforward answer about what students do during Friday reward if they haven't earned four or five stars. It really depends on the student and the situation. In my opinion, missing out on Friday reward shouldn't feel punitive or demeaning. Yes, consequences are necessary, but just the fact that they are missing out on an activity with their friends is enough to drive home the message. The "what" of the alternate activity during the Friday reward time is less important.
Usually, a student who does not participate in Friday reward will do some classwork of his or her choosing. I am very deliberate in making it clear that the school work is NOT the punishment! (This would obviously send the wrong message.) Instead, I present it as a productive option for filling their time while the rest of the class is otherwise engaged. So, a student may choose to work on math problems, reading, write a story, or one of our unit anchor activities. Sometimes, a student will ask to help with a classroom job such as sharpening pencils, organizing library books, or tidying our supply bins. If this is what the child prefers, and he can complete the task independently, I allow this as an option as well. To my thinking, missing out on Friday reward is the consequence in and of itself. I don't believe that I need to make the alternate activity feel like a punishment, too.
Fortunately, I rarely have to deal with students missing Friday reward. In my experience, the color chart system works so well in helping my students monitor their behavior, students hardly ever end up missing Friday reward.
Jeremy, I was browsing your wonderful blog, and I was excited to see that you wrote about using wikki stix in the classroom! I always have piles of wikki stix sitting on my students' tables when they arrive during the first two days of school. I find that it is an excellent ice breaker, and it immediately helps to set a creative and collaborative tone.
All the best,
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