It's not something every elementary teacher sets out to address but it does come up, especially for third graders towards the end of the year. Last week I noticed a certain...funk appearing throughout the day in my classroom. After recess and PE the class didn't smell as fresh anymore. Also, when kids were instructed to wash hands I noticed them rushing in the bathroom turning the water on, then quickly swiping their hands through cold water and heading towards snack. I knew parents could use some support on this one so I addressed the awkward topic of PERSONAL HYGIENE.
I presented a powerpoint on the subject and distributed a monthly chart for students to record hygienic behaviors. Next I made a post on Bloomz to inform parents of the current subject matter in hopes they would reinforce the behavior at home.
After showing the powerpoint and offering incentives for personal hygiene, one of my students gave me the fabulous idea of creating an award for it on Bloomz. At the end of the day I told my class to exhibit exceptional personal hygiene that evening and when they came to school the next day we would acknowledge personal hygiene at the morning circle with Bloomz Behavior Awards. After school that day I created the personal hygiene behavior award for our class.
In the morning I set up the computer to display the full screen mode of our class' Behavior Award Chart. Students were fired up to share personal stories of hygienic behavior. I could have let this morning circle go on for at least 45 minutes. I had to stop them from telling me examples of good hygiene! I never thought that would be the case. It was impressive to hear all the specific ways my elementary students took care of themselves the night before. I felt their sense of pride beaming.
I know that as each student shared their personal story it affected another student in a positive way. The message was clear and hygiene was a priority. When students hear it from a peer they take it seriously. If they know their friends care about personal hygiene, they will too. We are social creatures and caring for our health affects those around us as well as plays a part in how others perceive us. Through implementing this positive behavior award, my students were encouraged to take their health more seriously. Over time this will increase their self-awareness and self-respect. To think I'd include a behavior award for personal hygiene and it would profoundly and immediately change student behavior is surprizing but it shouldn't be. This is just another way technology can be used to support students in social, emotional, and PHYSICAL health.
What other creative ways have you used Bloomz Behavior Awards? Please comment in the section below.