A not-so-typical Awards Ceremony

Every once in a while, the subject of school awards comes up on the DWS mailring.  Usually the person is concerned that their school requires teachers to present student awards.  The concern is that this thinking doesn’t mesh well with the philosophy of someone wanting to foster internal motivation.

On another mailring recently, I read a post from a teacher whose school gives awards to every child in the school––but in quite a different way than most do.  I asked her permission to reprint the idea here.  I thought it might interest those looking for genuine ways to acknowledge children, without the typical problems associated with awards (as we usually think of them.)

Here’s her post:… >>>


Praising is second nature to me!


Today was my first time using DWS in the classroom.  I found it extremely difficult to break the habit of praising kids!  I want to encourage rather than praise, but it just seems that praising is second nature to me.


When first trying DWS in the classroom there’s much to think about––so don’t be too hard on yourself!

Remember Dr. Marshall’s advice:  Implement now, perfect later!

Just do your best and as you go along keep reflecting on things you would like to improve or change. You’re already doing this!   Step by step, you’ll start to move in the direction of your goals.

Don’t worry too much about the praise issue in these early days with DWS.  If … >>>


How do I turn off the urge to praise?

I have just read the book and plan to implement Discipline without Stress in this coming school year. I anticipate that I might have a problem with giving into the urge to praise individuals or the class as a whole. I can see myself saying, “Look at these students who have been on Level C and D all week! I’m so proud of you guys for following directions!” How do I turn off these urges to praise? How can I turn praise into productive comments that encourage and acknowledge all who are choosing to do the right thing? Please share any insights!

(Shared on the Discipline without Stress Mailring)

Take heart! You are well … >>>