Saturday, February 15, 2014

Spark Student Motivation Saturday - Estimate to Motivate

Hello Everyone!  Today I am linking up with Joanne from Head Over Heels for Teaching for her awesome linky, Spark Student Motivation Saturday.

I would like to share an idea that was inspired by this post from Joanne's blog.  I adapted it to fit some of the goals in my classroom.

I love that I have so many avid readers in my class.  However, I do have a few that need a push.  I also have a few who tend to abandon books as soon as the "latest and greatest" book becomes available.  I am using Joanne's estimation jar idea to help encourage all of my readers.  So far, it is working out great!

First, I headed over to Target and bought this jar and some candy to fill it.

(Start can contains empty slips.  Completed slips go in the polka dot can.)

Now that the jar is full, students try to earn guesses at the amount of candy by reading books.  Every time a student fiishes a book, they are allowed to make one guess on the amount of candy in the jar.  The student who guesses closest to the exact amount wins all the candy.  I will run this through the month of February.  After I announce the winner, I will refill the jar and run the contest again for the month of March.  I am planning on doing this every month until the end of the school year.

The students were super excited when I announced this contest.  Even my reluctant readers set goals so they could earn several guesses. 

Here are the forms I am using for students to fill out their books and guesses.  You can get them here, if you are interested in trying this out in your classroom.

Thank you, Joanne for inspiring this idea that has truly helped motivate my students to read and for hosting this awesome linky party every week!

Enjoy the rest of the weekend.


  1. Awww, thanks for the shout out Mary and I'm soooo glad it's motivated your kids! We have a bunch of teachers using it at my school now too! (My students didn't want me to blog about it because then other classes at our school could copy us! LOL!) As soon as one of my students passes a test, they race up to me to tell me they need a "Read to Win" slip, and like you, even my struggling, reluctant readers have bought in! So exciting!! Thanks for sharing and linking up!
    Head Over Heels For Teaching

  2. Oh my gosh!! This is the perfect post to read after posting my AR challenge idea. I'm totally gonna do this too! I think I will give them a guesstimate ticket if they pass an AR test with 80% or higher. Brilliant idea! Love it! This will motivate those last 7 kids in my class who just don't care. Thanks, Mary! : )

    Teaching Powered by Caffeine

  3. This is fantastic. I have been looking for something to inspire a few to read more (or at all). I think this just might fill the bill.
    Fourth and Goal in Fourth Grade

    1. It really helped some of mine. I hope it works for you as well!


  4. I LOVE this idea. I've got some errands to run today and I'm going to pick up a jar. Maybe Beall's Outlet will have something I can use.
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'