According to kindergartener, Kalena Schriner, “The Warrior Way is peaceful. If you are peaceful, then you get a ticket.” First grader, Kaptelina Fefelov says, “The Warrior Way makes the school better.” And kindergartener, Alexander Stading says simply, “The Warrior Way is fun!”
Nikolaevsk School is in its second year of implementing school-wide Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBiS). The Nikolaevsk Warrior Way defines behaviors that are respectful, responsible, and safe in common areas that are accessed by all students in the school, such as the hallways and the bathroom. Nikolaevsk staff are very proactive in teaching students expectations in settings, and then rewarding students for using good behaviors with tickets.
Students earn tickets for using good behaviors and making good choices in the school. Tickets earned by students are collected in the office, and counted. Once the ticket goal amount has been reached, a school-wide celebration is held. Celebrations this year include: a school-wide celebration center, principal day projects, K-3 horseback riding trip at Mr. Seller’s house, principals club, among others.
Teachers have now expanded their efforts into the classroom, using student surveys to gain student input on aspects such as student attendance and connectedness in school, and creating action plans to further support their students. The strategies in PBiS of focusing on and rewarding positive behaviors have been so widely embraced in the school, that the site council has adopted these practices as well. Due to concerns about the need to improve sportsman-like behaviors of fans at basketball games, the site council defined good fan behaviors, taught the behaviors at games, and rewards fans who exhibit these behaviors, regardless of which team they are supporting. Rewards come in the form of raffle tickets, which are drawn during the game for prizes.
The entire school body has changed their approach to recognize and reward positive behaviors. As a result, student behavior in the school has changed positively. Student office referrals decreased 63 percent in the first year of implementing PBiS in the school, which resulted in more students using positive behaviors, and fewer discipline issues.
Story submitted by Trina Uvaas, EdS, Nationally Certified School Psychologist