Mystery Student, ABC Countdown, Fairy Tale Winner

I don't know about you, but kids definitely have "spring fever".  They were not my normal sweet class last week.  I have been more stressed the past week than the beginning of the school year.  It is CRAZY!  I decided I needed to do something different because obviously what we had been doing wasn't really working anymore.  The idea of the mystery student came to me.  I have seen pins about this on Pinterest so I am not claiming this as my own idea, but I am putting my own twist on it.

In our building, we have a building wide behavior system.  {I posted about it here and here.}  It is our Tier 1 for behavior interventions.  It is really nice to have all students on the same system especially when you are the teacher on recess duty!  In addition to this, I also do a class positive behavior system where we can earn class rewards.  This means that we have to work together as a class to earn the reward.  I am using this "Sweet Behavior" idea from Jessica Williamson.  Every time my class gets a compliment from another teacher or myself they earn a cupcake.  Once we have nine cupcakes on the board, our helper pulls down one and we earn the reward on the back.  This has been a system in place since Day 1 of kindergarten.  We are going to beef it up a bit now though.

Each morning I am going to pull a student's name and hide it so no one can see who our mystery student is for the day.  Then at the end of the day, I will reveal who our mystery student was for the day.  If that child did not move any sticks, then we earn a cupcake.  If he/she moved sticks, then no cupcake for the day.  We can still earn them for compliments though.  So now we have two ways to earn.

We discussed this as a class last week and I went to each student and asked, "Can you try your hardest to help us earn a cupcake?".  Of course, each and every student answered with an enthusiastic, "YES!"

Thursday was our first day having a mystery student and I will admit that I rigged it a bit.  I just wanted my class to feel some success and motivate my other students to want to help the class.  So, I pulled a name of student who has moved 2 sticks ALL YEAR LONG!   He didn't move any on Thursday so we earned a cupcake.  The class was so excited and this little guy was so proud of himself!  :)

Friday, I did not rig it at all and the student who was picked unfortunately had moved two sticks so we did not earn a cupcake.  The class was very gracious about it as I had prepped them about what to do if we don't earn our cupcake.  So proud of how they handled it.

I also wanted to tell you about my ABC countdown I do at the end of the year.  I got this idea while I was in college observing classrooms.  One teacher told me all about it and I was hooked!  I knew this was something I would always do in my classroom.  Starting 26 days from the last day of school, we do a letter a day from the alphabet.  For the most part, each day's activity is at the end of the day.  Students may only participate if they have good behavior {if they move 3 sticks in one day we have to send home a note to parents so that was my limit for this}.  Some of the class favorites are King for a day, Queen for a day, Ice Cream Day, and Popsicle Day.  I am not buying something for every day, but I do want it to be exciting to motivate my students to have the best behavior they can.  All it takes is one day of missing out and then they are usually back on track.  {At least, this has been my experience in the past!}  If you would like to see my full ABC Countdown, please click on the image below and you can download it.  This is same exact paper that I send home to the parents.

We started today and celebrated August birthdays.  Tomorrow is Bubble Beach Day.  The students will bring in beach towels and I am providing bubbles.  Hopefully it is nice enough that we can go outside......I think there is rain in the forecast!

Last, but not least we need to find out who won Elizabeth's Fairy Tale Unit.  Once again, I can't figure out how to get the graphic for the random number generator.  Sorry folks, but I am exhausted and after trying for about 15 minutes I gave up!  The winning number was comment number 1 which means Amy Swan you are the WINNER!!!  Congrats!  Elizabeth should be emailing you soon.

I am going to bed now.  I know it's only 9:15, but this lady is exhausted.  I started coaching my daughter's softball team tonight and that wore me out!!


  1. This is a great post! I am having the same struggles in my classroom with things no longer working and kids gone crazy! I'm glad to hear it's not just me! I have had to try some different things too, but you gave me some cute ideas! Thank you and I hope you have a super end to your school year! :)

    Kinder Krazy

  2. I love your Cupcake motivation! I also think a mystery student each day is perfect for towards of the end of the year. Hope this motivation helps your kiddos :)

    Lovely Literacy & More

  3. I love your ABC Countdown idea! Such a motivating way to finish the year. I love that you have included lots of simple ideas that are easy to prepare but lots of fun!

    Love, Laughter and Learning in Prep

  4. The abc countdown seems like a fun idea. We're already past 26 days left, so maybe I can do it next year.

  5. I love the cupcake idea (super cute cupcakes by the way!)And the last Alphabet days countdown is great. We still have I think 33 days left. I'll have to definitely do something like this when it gets down to 26.

    Great ideas!

    Mrs. Thigpen's Kindergarten

  6. YAY!! Thank you!! How funny...I actually debated waiting to leave a comment and coming back later so I wouldn't be #1 because I figured, "Number 1 will NEVER be picked." LOL!! And, I loveLOVElove the cupcake idea. I've seen the "brownie points" idea...but I hate the connotation of brownie points. The cupcakes with rewards on the back are awesome!! Behavior has really changed in my class post-spring break, too. It's wearing me out and I've been trying to think of something new that is also manageable for me as a 1/2 day teacher. This might be a perfect fit!!

    Happy Teacher Heaven

  7. I am loving the mystery student idea! We do not have a school-wide behavior system. I don't mind for myself, but some of the kids in our school. YIKES! I wish I could give them a consequence that mattered to them. Good luck coaching!

    Learning With Mrs. Leeby

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