Encourage and Praise The Achievements of Your Students

Children feed off positivity, so encouraging and praising them is a must if you want to get the very best out of them. Not all students are the same, with some performing stronger in some areas than others and vice versa.

This means that tailoring the targets that you set each pupil to their unique skillset is a must. While one target may feel unrealistic for one, it may not be challenging enough for another and both cases may result in the student losing motivation and concentration.

Offering suitable targets and challenges, along with encouragement, is what children need and, when they achieve their target, praise and suitable recognition should be given. Like anyone, children enjoy being told when they have done something well – and they will strive to earn more praise through positive reinforcement.

How to Reward Students for Achievement

There are many ways that you can recognise your students’ achievements. Firstly, you should consider the type of achievement they have achieved – i.e. is it academic, behavioural or sporting? Is the achievement specific to what they have been doing at school? Or does it encompass what they have been doing outside of school as well?

Finding the right level of recognition is important as going over the top means that greater achievements aren’t seen as such, while under-rewarding can have a demotivating effect on the student. Quite simply, some achievements warrant something greater than a gold star (while, sometimes, that will suffice).

Awards Effectively Motivate Pupils to Learn

It has been proven by education psychologists that rewards, recognition and awards work in terms of motivation and leads to successful learning outcomes and achievements for school-aged pupils. This has been proven through theory, research and application.

Everybody needs positive reinforcements and rewards. We may not all be consciously aware of it, but reinforcement is nearly always the reason we continue to do many things that we do and that’s not just in children, it’s true in adults, too. We all look for positive reinforcement to extend our motivation for the things we do.

Awards and rewards are a brilliant way of motivating students to learn and work just as well; whether they are determined by peer, self or teacher-based assessments, as researched and proven by Dr Nellie Deutsch who has a doctorate in educational leadership, with a specialisation in curriculum, technology and instruction.

The most traditional glass awards and trophies are given in schools because of grades and results from grade-based evaluations. Students are rewarded for the knowledge they gain and remember through school, however, there are other reasons awards can be given as students, especially for those that are not as academic but still give their all.

These can include:

  • Outstanding Attendance
  • Excellent Behaviour
  • Star Student
  • Most Improvement
  • Friendliest Student

When to Reward Good Behaviour

Reward systems are utilised as a tool in schools to help shape the behaviour of students and to create motivation. Not only does the student receiving an award for their behaviour receive positive reinforcements but so, too, do their peers who want to be recognised in the same way.

Rewards reinforce what is expected of the student and how they should behave. Without a reward system in place to recognise positive behaviour, the only attention a student may have from an adult is negative – i.e. when they engage in negative behaviour. By rewarding good behaviour, it gives students the attention that they are seeking and are less likely to behave badly for attention.

Of course, not every showing of good behaviour should be rewarded – doing so only serves to devalue the reward and students will be less likely to engage positively. That means that simple expectations such as turning up on time or wearing the correct uniform aren’t worthy of recognition, but a student going out of their way to support their peers or excelling in their work certainly is.

Academic Achievement

Rewarding academic achievement is a must as this will encourage students to apply themselves to their studies. As we have already touched upon, students of different abilities will not have the same targets, so make sure to reward accordingly.

For example, a student that achieves a grade B, who normally struggles to achieve a C grade, should receive some kind of recognition. A straight-A student, on the other hand, would be disappointed to receive a B grade, so in this instance, recognition would not be suitable. When a student does consistently receive high grades, there is a slight chance that they will become demotivated as they either feel unchallenged by the work and/or do not feel that they are being recognised for their work. Make sure to recognise these students for their hard work as well.

It is also important to remember that while some students enjoy being recognised in front of their peers, others would rather not have attention drawn to them. Consider the personality of the student and judge whether it would be better to reward them publicly or more discreetly (i.e. not in front of the class).

Here at Fen Regis Trophies, we offer a range of awards and trophies suitable for recognising the achievement of students, whether for academic, sporting or behavioural achievement. For more information on the range of products we offer, please do not hesitate to get in contact with us today.

Visit our online shop