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SMS Implements Learning Earnings Program
Posted On:
Tuesday, May 02, 2017
Pictured, l-r, 8th grader Morgan Riley, 6th grader Alantis Costello, 6th grader Kate Dinkel, and 8th grader Angelina Venters collect their earned rewards through the Learning Earnings program at Simmons Middle School.
Pictured, l-r, 8th grader Morgan Riley, 6th grader Alantis Costello, 6th grader Kate Dinkel, and 8th grader Angelina Venters collect their earned rewards through the Learning Earnings program at Simmons Middle School.

SMS Implements Learning Earnings Program

Simmons Middle School (SMS) implemented the Learning Earnings Program (LE), a school-wide positive behavior incentive program beginning in November 2016. SMS is the only school in Hoover and the surrounding areas to be undertaking this program. Administrators are saying that they are seeing an increase in positive behavior in students.

This program has created a way for all students, staff, and faculty members to participate. The great thing about LE is the customization! The faculty and staff members have the opportunity to give immediate, positive feedback on good behavior. A student may be rewarded at any time and for very specific, positive behavior: by a custodian for picking up a piece of trash in the hall without being asked or from a teacher for going above and beyond to help others, showing integrity, having good attendance, participating in class, or making good choices. Students are able to log in to their LE accounts to view their points and why they received the points, which reinforces the positive behavior.

Then students can “shop” with their accumulated points. Some examples of rewards are gift cards from I-Tunes, Google Play, Chick-fil-A, Yogurt Mountain, Bahama Bucks, and Nothing Bundt Cakes (Hoover location). Students can also “purchase” the opportunity to be a Physical Education (PE) assistant, sit with a friend during lunch, hold the classroom snake, or lead the school in the Pledge of Allegiance during morning announcements, to name just a few of the customized rewards developed by teachers and administrators. Other favorite prizes are a variety of candy (Twix bars, Blow-Pops, chocolate M&Ms, chocolate Hershey bars, Skittles, and Sour Patch Kids). Some choose to “cash in” for a smaller prize every week, while others save up their points for a larger prize.

One of the best features about the program is that parents can log in from anywhere to see their child’s progress and to help pick out prizes. Also, there is no fee to parents for the prizes awarded or to use the site. The school’s PTO has been active in helping this program run. They have collected prizes, restocked the prize cabinet, and bagged rewards that have been “ordered” during the week. Sunshine teacher, Ms. Sarah Southerland, and Sunshine students deliver the goody bags to teachers’ mailboxes. Teachers hand out the prizes weekly. Then Sunshine students collect the empty bags and return them to PTO to be reused for the next week's deliveries.  

A big thank you to Drake Middle School in Auburn for being instrumental in helping SMS get the LE program started.

How can you help? We are always seeking donations of single-serving sizes, like what you see at the store checkout lanes, of chocolate Hershey Bars, Twix, Blow-Pops, Starburst, Sour Patch Kids, chocolate M&Ms, and Skittles. Donations can be sent to the attention of the counselors. 

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