Awesome Socks Rocks – Cheap and Easy Positive Reinforcement
If you’re looking for a cheap and effective way to reinforce good behavior with kids then look no further than Awesome Socks Rocks! I use this little trick as a form positive reinforcement with my younger students and it really helps with classroom management. Awesome Socks Rocks are another fabulous idea that I borrowed and modified from the amazing Debbie Gray, who I student taught with years ago.
The Awesome Socks Rocks are just one of many positive reinforcement tricks that I use in my classroom. No matter what you use in your class (stickers, candy, special seating, etc.), you should have some sort of positive reward system in your classroom. Students want to work hard and do their best, but often having a prize or other positive reward helps them really focus their attention. I have a variety of other blog posts about positive reinforcement tips and tricks that you might enjoy.
Awesome Socks Rocks – What they are and Where to Get Them
I tell students that I’ve found amazing and rare rocks from around the world and placed them in my “Awesome Socks Rocks” jar. While I have sourced them from different locations, Awesome Socks Rocks are really just colored marbles or vase filler that you can buy for a few dollars from any home decoration store, Walmart, Dollar Tree and a variety of other places.
I don’t like to pay more than a dollar or two for these rocks because I give them away quite often. You can find a variety of these flat marbles at the Dollar Tree in limited colors and from other retailers in any color you wish. I even found these rocks on Amazon in a rainbow of colors.
Getting Kids Excited About Awesome Socks Rocks
Since they’re really just rocks, I have to really talk them up to get kids excited about the prize. Usually I’ll say something like this, “I have awesome socks rocks for kids who are being super, amazingly quiet in line (or raises their hand or whatever you want). I have lots of different colors in here and I have a lots of rocks to give away. The person who has worked so well today gets a rock of any color they choose and they get to keep it forever!!” This type of pitch works especially well for the younger students, but sometimes the older kids like awesome socks as a prize as well.
My awesome socks rocks are just colored marbles but you can do this with any kind of rocks. I’ve seen other teachers do something similar with river rock that they’ve glued little googley eyes to. You could also paint larger rocks in a variety of fun colors or with cool patterns. I think what really makes these appealing is that I let kids choose which rock they want. As long as I have a variety of colors in the jar, kids are all for it!
To complete the process I took an old jar and wrote the words “awesome socks rocks” on the side and then put it in a special place in my classroom. You could also put them in a fun jar, a colorful bag, or some other container that gets kids excited.