Misconception #1: ClassEquity will be extra work for me.
The best part about a classroom economy is that by empowering students to take over responsibilities, work is actually taken off of your plate! We recommend starting as small as possible, and then you can build on to your economy as best suits your needs.
Bonuses: If sending bonuses digitally feels time consuming to do during class, keep track of the bonuses you want to send throughout the day on a piece of paper and input them all at once. Or better yet, hire a student to keep track of bonuses and send them on ClassEquity for you! You can learn more about the banker role here.
Classroom jobs: If you're interested in introducing jobs in a low-lift way, start small by hiring every student as a "Student", as this is their main job of course! This will give students a salary to pay their bills, with no "extra work" on your part. Then, teachers can decide if they'd like to add bonus jobs for students to apply to, but it is completely optional. If teachers do want to include jobs, these can actually be a very powerful way to delegate tasks to students and make your life easier! See tips for implementing and managing jobs here.
Hear from King's Ridge how ClassEquity has simplified their school's behavior management system and saved teachers time!
Misconception #2: Is this just rewarding students for what they already should be doing?
Just like learning math skills requires modeling, reinforcement, and feedback, so do soft skills. We recommend aligning bonuses to school-wide values and social-emotional learning (SEL) core competencies, such as demonstrating resilience, self-management, and responsible decision-making. ClassEquity enables teachers to establish clear expectations, model appropriate behaviors, and provide immediate feedback as students practice these soft skills throughout the day.
We also recommend co-creating your economy with your students to improve engagement, accountability, and community. ClassEquity shifts the paradigm of classroom management from "I am the teacher, obey my rules" to a collaborative community of teachers and students working together to create a positive and productive learning environment. Learn more about how ClassEquity teacher Cass M. co-creates her economy to be student-led.
Misconception #3: Paying students is just another form of extrinsic motivation.
Research actually shows that positive reinforcement can improve intrinsic motivation, academic performance, social-emotional competence, reduce bullying, decrease drug/alcohol abuse, referrals and suspensions, reduce racial inequities in discipline, and improve school climate (sources here and here).
At ClassEquity, we take positive reinforcement to the next level by empowering students to take ownership of their classroom community and develop real-world skills. Just as you and I are compensated for our jobs, ClassEquity allows students to experience earning a simulated income and practice saving, spending, and budgeting in a safe environment. When compensation is linked to actions that truly meet a need and support the classroom community, students feel the impact of their contributions and learn to take responsibility for their decisions.
We also recommend filling your classroom store with experience or privilege-based rewards. Teachers have found these to be even more popular than tangible rewards like Takis or fidget spinners. For example, a positive note home can be a powerful motivator, as one school discovered when over 50 students purchased it in the first week. By providing students with control over their day, ClassEquity fosters a sense of autonomy and motivation. Check out some of our other free and experience-based rewards here.