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twin2 07-16-2018 10:39 AM

want to ditch clip chart though school wide expectation
How do you ditch the clip chart when it is a school-wide expectation? Do you hang it up and just refuse to use it? When a student is written up, it is expected that the teacher list steps taken, which is supposed to include color changes. Color changes seem to be ineffective for students who have consistent behavior problems. If anything, it might escalate a student's behavior. Then at the end of the day, students who have not had to change their color move up to blue. That doesn't seem right to me either. Just because they didn't move their color, doesn't mean they had a stellar day. I just want to focus on community, though I acknowledge there has to be a plan for misbehavior too. I want that plan to be individualized and private. What do you do?

Gromit 07-16-2018 10:56 AM


How do you ditch the clip chart when it is a school-wide expectation? Do you hang it up and just refuse to use it?
Yes. ;)

You could hang it somewhere that the kids canít see it and use it in conjunction with your own management plan. Then youíll have colored documentation of behavior for admin but not the competitive public nature of it.

Fenwick 07-16-2018 08:15 PM

Yep, it's nonsense as well as unprofessional to "mandate" a discipline system and expect everyone to embrace it enthusiastically when they had no say in its effectiveness in the first place. Clip chart is nothing more than traditional names-on-the-board with colors. And you are absolutely correct; discipline should be private. Some time back my school adopted the "card" system. Same as clips except students moved colored cards.

There are few things more powerful that will destroy a student's desire to behave than putting their name up in neon for all to see that constantly reminds them how "bad" they are. In the card system, as any teacher can guess, the same kids who were "red" (bad) in Sept. were the same kids in June. That is, the system was a failure. However, it did look impressive; a reason many administrators like "showy" systems.

I stopped using cards about two weeks into the year. Fortunately the school dropped it after one year. I would have quit and looked for another school otherwise. Years later at another school any new "system" was always voluntary. Any possibility you could talk to Ad', explain your concerns (other teachers with you could help) and make it voluntary?

twin2 07-25-2018 08:27 AM

Duplicate post
I just realized I posted this question in May as well. I appreciate the responses to this repeated post.

arsabl 07-25-2018 08:35 AM

Iíve been wanting to ditch the clip chart as well. Iím horrible at the clip up because my students are so good. It seems like a behavior chart is meant to help a student change a behavior. If students are already well behaved, why the chart?

Maybe Iíll go to an individual chart instead for those who need it.

twin2 07-25-2018 09:34 AM

One of the things that bothers me is the school rule that all students who stay on green move up to blue. Sometimes those students may not have been asked to move down to yellow, but their behavior makes me feel like they also don't deserve to go to blue.

Another issue with that rule is keeping track of who actually stayed on green. At the end of the day, sometimes I can't remember if particular students had a color change, so I trust them to mark their agendas with what they really earn. Maybe this is okay. Maybe it's not. I feel like it teaches some to lie.

I don't like when students cry that they will get beat at home. Sometimes their color change doesn't warrant a spanking at home, and it certainly doesn't deserve being screamed at by the parents. I move kids back to green when I can, but sometimes the behavior happens at the end of the day. What happens in school that is not chronic or major is between me and my students and doesn't need to go home.

Fenwick 07-25-2018 03:28 PM

A fundamental problem with clip charts, color cards and the like is they are public. Discipline should be private; between the teacher and student. Public discipline often backfires as students seek revenge for be called out in front of peers. From the student's perspective they and classmates have to sit and stare at the "Wanted" posters. Anyone entering the room - student, teacher, parent, principal - will know instantly who is "bad" and who is "good". And from this flashy neon, "Look everyone. These are the bad kids", a teacher will try to build positive relationship?

In addition an effective discipline system should "reduce" the teacher's workload. Keeping track and clerical should be zero or close to it. If you are running around moving clips, charting, notifying parents etc. the system will wear you down and effect your ability to be the same caring person every day. If the school was really on top of things they should issue new running shoes at the start of each school year.

twin2 07-25-2018 04:10 PM

Fenwick you described what I have experienced. Some teachers put numbers on their clips so students have privacy, but the whole class quickly learns "that kid's" number. The only good thing about using numbers is the teacher doesn't have to remake clips the next year.

From what I have been reading, we should be using nonverbal cues to correct minor behavior infractions and discipline should be positive. Having a child move their clip is embarrassing and far from positive or private.

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