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The Effort Categories – an overview

The Ready Category

Am I Ready? An effort score of “Ready” is given to students that arrive on time, have their supplies, and are quietly listening when you begin class.  Absences and Tardies can also be tracked. 

If you decide Ready scoring will include “bell” work, it’s better for the students to understand that they earn their Ready pts – not that they are spotted 10 points and then lose points if they don’t meet expectations.  With this in mind, wait until “bell” time is nearly up, score students who do not deserve full credit and then use the “Score all Students” button to score everyone else as “Ready.”

The Participation Category

Am I ParticipatingStudent names are listed randomly and you can view them either in “Card” or “List” view. Regular use of this category will equalize student participation opportunities, improve individual and class focus, and help students gain confidence.

SUGGESTION: to help students feel more at ease, use the “talk to your neighbor” technique before calling on several students. Spread the spotlight by saying “Jane, what did you and your neighbor come up with?”

With the Participation category, you are scoring attentiveness not whether or not students can answer questions correctly.  For students who do not have an answer or a guess, request that they repeat the question to show they were paying attention – “I don’t know what else is needed for photosynthesis” – is a high score because the student is proving they were paying attention.

The Participation category may be used to select students to answer questions, repeat directions, give an opinion, read aloud, etc. Some students have anxiety about reading in front of their peers. Tell your students to let you know if they want to be skipped for Participation/reading. 

From chapter ten of  Teach Like a Champion –  the goal when reading aloud in class is to have one student as the primary reader and the remaining students as secondary readers.  The primary reader should be changed often and unpredictably. The transition from one primary reader to the next should be done with a minimum of words.  “Thank you, next is Jordan.”  See more tips on this topic at our Teacher Help Center.

The On Task Category

Am I On TaskThe ability of students to focus and stay on task is an important skill to reinforce. When explaining a learning task, link student effort scoring to one or more expectations. “In deciding your effort score for today’s lab, I will be watching to see if you a) work well with your group, b) enter the correct data in your data table including units, c) stay at your lab station, d) clean up the lab area.”

Go around the room and reinforcestrong effort by complimenting individual students or student groups. Tell students whose effort is below “On Task” that you will check back later and raise their score if they improve their effort. (Use “more scoring options” to allow 9 scoring options instead of 3.)
In addition to scoring student effort, you can use the On Task category to reduce your workload by naming and then scoring an activity or an assignment (no need to collect papers).
If you want to include an activity or assignment in your gradebook, name it by creating a “Subcategory” (see image arrow). This will give you the option of entering scores in your gradebook later (the app is not connected to your gradebook so scores will need to be entered manually).

The Behavior Category

Am I Behaving? Using the scoring app to score disruptive behavior in the moment, is not recommended.  Instead, track student behavioral-redirects (mentally or on paper) and enter behavior scores after class or on an interval schedule that works for you.

SUGGESTION: change the point value to reflect the number of days you’re scoring (1 day = 10 points, … 5 days = 50 points).

From the Behavior category, teachers may quickly send comments to parents/guardians and students.  Your comments are sent to the student’s portal and an email alert is sent to any parents or guardians associated with the student.

The Recognition Category

The Recognition category of the scoring app is used to recognize individual students for “…recent strong effort in meeting or exceeding  expectations in both behavior and learning.”  Most students enjoy receiving recognition in front of their peers.

We recommend announcing Effort Award winners daily. Student names are listed in a random order. Choose the first 2 – 4 deserving students for either a Gold, Silver, or Bronze award. To help you decide between Gold, Silver, or Bronze, the averages of each student’s last three scores are listed next to their name.
The program automaticaly sends the badges to the student portals of Effort Award winners. The badge includes “Effort Shares” which can be thought of as bonus points that have no real value or as a currency that may be spent on “Buyback” offerings from the teacher or school.

From the teacher dashboard: (1) teachers create buyback offerings that (2) appear on student portals.  When students redeem a buyback offering, an order (3) is sent to a table in the teacher dashboard.

In addition to the Effort Award badge that will automatically be sent to each student’s portal, you may also want to hand out Effort Award certificates. To customize your own Effort Awards, an Effort Award template is a is available on our website.