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Five Kid-Approved Games to Improve Classroom Management

Effective substitute teacher classroom management is a special challenge because a substitue may often see a group of students only once! Try these five student approved games designed to keep students successful and engaged!

  1. Letter Reveal

Students love a good mystery! Use post it notes or printer paper and write one letter on each paper that spells out something fun like P-I-C-N-I-C or D-A-N-C-E P-A-R-T-Y! Set a timer and when students are well-behaved for 30 minutes (or 1 hour depending on your day), reveal a letter! If students get all letters revealed, they get the reward they spelled!

  2. Paper Bag Surprise

Bring a small dollar store gift in a paper sack. Tell students that you have a surprise for the student who displays the very best behavior! Do not let students know what is in the bag! They will love that it is a mystery gift!

  3. Fill in the Circles

Draw three large circles on the board. Tell students that when they have done a great job for at least 30 minutes (or an hour depending on your day) that you will color in half of the circle and then the other half and so on. Once all circles are filled students receive a reward like game time, extra recess, story time, etc.

  4. Point System

Put students in groups of four or five. They may already be seated in groups! Tell students that they will be competing with other groups and that you will give points to groups that you see following directions and finishing work. The group with the most points at the end of the day will receive a letter to give to their teacher about their fantastic behavior!

  5. Trash Ball

This is also a fun group game! Students will compete with their groups to see who can have the best behavior for 30 minutes! Each time 30 minutes is up, the group with the best behavior gets to shoot a wad of paper into the trashcan. The group that ends up with the most points wins a reward such as a note home to their parents, a note to their teacher, a small prize like a pencil or a bouncy ball, or any other creative reward!

Do you have any fun games that you play with students to keep them on task and engaged?


photo credit: Old Shoe Woman - cc

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