Our students have been on vacation all summer- sleeping in, eating whatever and whenever they like, and whiling away the hours completely plugged in. Now that it is time to snap back into the school year routine you may find some new behaviors are popping up. So what is the cure? Behavior modification using a token economy in LIFE Skills!
What is a Token Economy?
A Token Economy is a system of behavior modification based- we reinforce good behavior by awarding tokens, which can then be exchanged for a desired reinforce. In my world, I eat a certain number of good for you foods so that I can have my desired reinforce- sweets! In the classroom, a student may complete an academic task, execute a desired behavior, or comply for a desired amount of time.
When would I use a Token Economy?
Anytime you want to create a system of rewards to get a desired behavior- everyone should be working for something! Some people work for intrinsic reinforcement like praise, high-fives, or good grades. If you are working with students who are not motivated by things like grades but are motivated by tangible things or desired activities, this will create a reliable system where those things can be earned.
Why Use a Behavior Chart?
To create a consistent and reliable way to modify behavior. It also helps to add a visual component to a rewards system.
Who Uses Behavior Charts?
Any student who needs to complete multiple tasks before receiving a desired activity or reward.
So… HOW Do I Do This?
There is an excellent printable guide from the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center which includes a section on hoe to fade the token economy. I would print this and make it available in your classroom and with your teaching team so everyone can be on the same page when using a token economy with a specific student.
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