Catchem' Critters | Behavior Management

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There are many things we need to know as teachers that they do not teach you in college. One of the things I wish they would teach students- one thing I truly wish I had a class on, is classroom management.

Sure, we learn as we go- but wouldn't it be great if we went into the classroom with a clear idea of how to do this? If we could start Day 1 with an awesome behavior management plan worked out and prepared? My first year would have been a lot different.

Luckily, I did learn. Eventually. Through the years I've tried different things- read SO many different books. I envisioned a classroom where students were extremely productive, respectful, and successful- and each year I continue to strive for that. Some years it's easier than others. And some things work with certain groups... others do not.

One thing I know for sure is the value of positive reinforcement. Sure, I believe students need consequences for poor choices (more on that in a future post)- but you can really shape desirable behaviors with your students with a solid positive reinforcement system.

I have used many different kinds of incentives in my classroom: stickers, Class Dojo, positive notes home, Star Student, Dolphin Dollars, etc. These things work- but I wanted to add something this year that would really get kids excited. Something that would be brand NEW and very motivating.

That's when I came up with the Catchem' Critter Behavior Management System!

The Catchem' Critter Behavior Management System is a new twist on motivating and encouraging positive behaviors with children. Within this system, all children are collectors and their goal is to catch as many critters as possible and advance as many levels as possible. Children catch new critters by making positive choices. New critters are given at the teacher's discretion. This system is an engaging alternative to giving out tickers, tags, etc.

Here's how it works:

Students collect Critter Cards when they are caught making positive choices.

They store these critters in a booklet called a Critter Keeper.

To make the Critter Keeper you simply need to print the pages front to back (double sided), fold down the middle, and staple. No need to cut! 

There are fifty numbered spaces in each Critter Keeper- one for each critter. 

Upon collecting all the critters in a group, they will level up and receive a certificate and/or reward coupon.

Each Critter Card provides the name, picture, number, size, type, and description of a different critter. There are 50 critters in this system.

Every critter embodies a positive character trait. This is a great opportunity to expand your students' vocabulary, expand on character trait instruction, and explain/encourage ideal traits.

As an option, the system also includes Collector Cards. You may choose to use and display Collector Cards in your classroom (either in a dedicated wall space or on each of your student's desks/tables). You can then attach badges or stickers each time a student advances a level. If you want to keep the children's progress more private, you many want to skip this component. Especially if you have students who are advancing at vastly different rates. This program is all about being positive!

You can keep your critters organized by using plastic bags, envelopes, or folders... but the easiest is to use an organizer. Click here to find the organizer in this picture on

To make the label for each drawer I cut the pictures of each critter from critter cards and laminated them. I learned an awesome trick recently- put just a TINY dab of glue from a glue stick on the back of each picture to keep them from sliding around in the laminating pocket.

You can grab a free sample of the Catchem' Critter Behavior Management System by clicking here!

If you'd like to grab the FULL system, click here.

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Check out more great back to school ideas at XClass to the Rescue!

Five for Friday | 8/12/16

I'm finally back and linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching Five for Friday! This post is completely random- I'm a little off my game! My last post was in NOVEMBER.

There's nothing like getting mail. Especially when there's a package. Especially ESPECIALLY when there's Erin Condren package!

My beautiful teacher planner for the 2016-2017 has arrived! I spent the night it came getting it ready and applying those annoying but cute date stickers. It was all fun and games until I realized I put the date stickers on wrong for EIGHT of the months. Womp womp. For January through August of 2017 I was looking at 2016 calendars. Sooo after spending what felt like an eternity putting the stickers on, I had to go back and pull them off. FAIL. Currently waiting for a new set of stickers... I'm sure they'll arrive after the school year begins...

Over two years ago I asked my husband for all five levels of Italian Rosetta Stone for Christmas. Over two years ago I swore that I was going to breeze through the lessons and be fluent in no time. (Despite the fact that after two years of Italian in high school and two years in college it still didn't "stick").

Over two years ago was the last time I did a lesson. Yikes. I didn't even complete the first level.

Well, I've finally decided that this will be the year I learn. So far I've been doing it a little every day.  I'll let you know how that goes in two years.

Instead of doing all the super productive things I promised myself I'd do this summer... like organizing all the junk in the basement... organizing the office... getting ready for September... washing the dishes... doing the laundry- Instead of all those things I've been playing Subway Surfer on my iPhone. I know. I'm terrible. My husband and I are obsessed. Notice below that my score is over two million. TWO MILLION. I know, I know... this is probably not something I should tell people.

 If only I had a magnet in real life that pulled money to me everywhere I went. Where can I get one of those?

Last weekend I went to a Jersey Shore TpT Meetup- and it was AWESOME! I learned so much from all of these fabulous sellers... I am so grateful for their patience with me and my million questions. I even brought a notebook and took notes. Yup. I was that girl. I don't even care because it was worth it.

Birthday Giveaway

I'm proud to say that after having The Daily 5 FOREVER (first and second edition), I finally finished it! It's about time. I read The Cafe Book already. I even did a whole presentation on Cafe for grad school. I know I'm a little backwards, but better late than never I guess. Lots of good information in this book- though I will need to adapt it a bit. Unfortunately, we don't have a two and a half hour ELA block like some other districts do. However, I need to shake up my ELA instruction this year and this is just what I need. More on that in a future post...

Have you read The Daily 5? Do you use it? Do you LOVE it? Comment to let me know!