Emphasize student effort to
improve student engagement
and raise outcomes.

Emphasize student effort to
improve student engagement
and raise outcomes.

The E4Effort System

Give students two ways to gauge their performance: Academic grades and in-class Effort

Designed for grades 3 to 12 by a middle school teacher, tested and approved by teachers with over 100 years of experience.

Benefits of using the E4Effort System include:

  • Your students are more attentive
  • Their participation opportunities are balanced
  • You’ll give more feedback on both effort and product
  • You can hold students accountable while collecting less work
  • Use the Recognition category to give authentic praise

Why Emphasize Effort?

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“I like to use the “On Task” category when my students are working in groups or individually. On the board I list what I need to see and hear as I move around the room. This way the students know how to get full points. When students are off task, I remind them of the expectations and lower their effort score to 70% or lower.  I tell these students that I will check in again and if their effort improves so will their score (up to 90%). This routine really keeps the students moving in the right direction.”

Mary Catherine Halasz, 7th grade language arts teacher – Minneapolis, MN

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“I appreciate E4Effort’s easy-to-use teacher dashboard and effort-scoring app, the motivation my students find without needing to use my voice, and the excitement students have for redeeming their Effort Shares at the end of each trimester. I appreciate the random participation feature, as it makes sure I include all of my students. When students know their effort level will be scored, they stay on task longer and overall class engagement becomes higher.”

Käri Anderson Suggs, 6th grade teacher, Little Canada Elementary School, MN

The E4Effort System:

Helps students raise their level of GRIT!

Chapter three of the New York Time bestseller GRIT is about the psychology of achievement. The author presents two simple equations on how to get from talent to achievement: talent x effort = skill and skill x effort = achievement. Students should know that effort counts twice when going from talent to achievement!

Duckworth, Angela. Grit: the power of passion and perseverance. Vermilion, 2017.

Reinforces time on task

by scoring students in the Ready, and On Task categories and by awarding badges through the Recognition category. “Continuous reinforcement [Ready and On Task categories] is the best way to develop new behaviors or to improve performance when it is very low.” While the effect of continuous reinforcement is strong and needed for steady improvement, “intermittent reinforcement [Recognition category] generates higher levels of performance than continuous reinforcement.” (Daniels et al., 2004, p.77.)

Daniels, Aubrey C. and James E. Daniels. Performance ManagementPerformance Management Publications, 2004.

Promotes skills such as perseverance, self control, and conscientiousness – being vigilant.

Researchers in the field of industrial/organizational psychology, found that the best predictor for hiring productive workers was conscientiousness.

Tough, Paul. How Children SucceedMariner Books; Reprint edition (July 2, 2013)

Gets students to focus better through the practice of cold calling.

“…the single most powerful technique in this book is, I believe, Cold Call” (Doug Lemov, pg 114).

Lemov, Doug. Teach Like A Champion: 49 techniques that put students on the path to collegeJossey-Bass, 2010.

Improves student awareness

“things can’t get into long term memory unless they have first been in working memory … if you don’t pay attention to something you can’t learn it.”

Willingham, Daniel T. Why Don’t Student’s Like School?: a cognitive scientist answers questions about how the mind works and what it means for the classroomJossey-Bass,2009 (pp. 54-55).

Encourages a Growth Mindset

By having the teacher consistently observe and report student effort!

Dweck, Carol S. Mindset: the new psychology of successBallentine Books, 2008.

Provides extrinsic rewards

in the forms of scores, badges, and Effort Shares. Social cognitive researchers and self-determination theorists “concur that under proper provision, extrinsic rewards may in effect ignite intrinsic motivation and therefore reinforce learners’ participation and deep learning.”

Rassuli, A, (2012). Engagement in Classroom Learning: Creating Temporal Participation Incentives for Extrinsically Motivated Students Through Bonus Credits. Journal Of Education For Business, 87, 2, pp. 86-93

Counterbalances the negative effect of low grades.

“low grades may set in motion a downward spiral, whereby consequent declines in engagement result in even lower grades.”

Poorthuis, A. M. G., Juvonen, J., Thomaes, S., Denissen, J. J. A., Orobio de Castro, B., & van Aken, M. A. G. (2015). Do grades shape students’ school engagement? The psychological consequences of report card grades at the beginning of secondary school. Journal of Educational Psychology, 107(3), 842-854.