Last year, I started a classroom economy system in my 6th-grade classes where each student applied for a classroom job to “pay” for renting their desk. They received bonuses for participation and good grades and participated in an auction once a month for prizes. The 7th graders kept talking about it so I wanted to replicate it in some way in our hybrid classes. I turned to my source for the classroom economy idea, Thom Gibson, a math/ science teacher and blogger. He wrote an article about how to continue with classroom jobs over zoom so I ran with the idea.
Some of the jobs are to help me with daily classroom tasks such as “Attendance Expert” or “Chat Monitor” but others are just for fun!
Here are just a few of the jobs that help the students feel connected to each other and bring us together as a class.
“Motivational Speaker”- Finds a quote or gives a one-minute speech that will motivate his or her classmates. It's a great way to add some public speaking into the virtual setting.
“Bizarre Holiday Expert”- Find the Bizarre holiday of the day and announce it in the beginning of class like, “National Rubber Duckie Day” (It really is a holiday!)
“Class DJ”- Picks a song to play at the beginning of class while virtual students are logging on. Song choices have included, “Don’t Stop Believing” and “I’ve got a feeling”.
“Class Pet Manager”- One student’s pet becomes the class pet and gives us updates about how the pet is doing every Thursday. One 7th grader also sends me pictures of his cat which I randomly put in google slides for all the students to find.
“Podcaster” -Create a Two-minute podcast each week about anything that interests the student. Pierce in 6th grade has been doing a great job with this. Here is his most recent addition.
“Athletic Director”- Sets a timer for 20 minutes and then leads the class in stretches or exercises to break up the class and keep everyone moving. I included a short clip of some jumping jacks in my 7th-grade class.
It can be challenging to make sure everyone is doing their job but it has added a lot of fun and connection in our classes which is sometimes more important during this time.