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Research Abstract Effects of Consistent Positive Reinforcement on Overall Classroom Performance Ashley Evans, ELED 595, Research Methods

& Techniques November 28, 2012 Main Research Question What effect will consistent positive reinforcement have on the overall classroom performance? Sub-Questions 1. What effect will consistent positive reinforcement have on Quiz and Test Scores? 2. What effect will consistent positive reinforcement have on the homework completion percentage? 3. What effect will consistent positive reinforcement have on overall class averages? 4. What effect will consistent positive reinforcement have on the class averages of my 3 lowest scoring students from the 1st six weeks? Data Collection Online Grade Book & Journaling Research Design I began journaling week one. In my journal I noted praise-worthy actions by my students, as well as classroom climate and attitude. The journaling also helped me become better acquainted with my students. I began sending home Jag Cards, which are post cards with our school logo, and on that post card I gave specific praises to each student. Furthermore, I began making positive phone calls home to parents. Once the 5 weeks concluded, I began documenting my findings with the use of my online grade book. After recording the results, I began to share my findings with my colleagues.

Findings 1. Journaling, phone calls home, and Jag Cards contributed to a 9.1% increase in quiz scores, and a 3.9% increase in test scores. Secondly, the majority of my lower performing quiz and test takers were able to raise their averages. Finally, my Latino/Hispanic population seemed to benefit the most from the consistent positive feedback. 2. Journaling, phone calls home, and Jag Cards helped to contribute to a 4.84% drop in the number of zeros in my grade book. 3. Journaling, phone calls home, and Jag Cards contributed to a 6.42% increase in the total classroom average for the second six weeks. Also, this class outscored my other two classes, when in the first six weeks their total class average was lower than the other two classes. In addition, my Latino/Hispanic students seemed to benefit the greatest from the positive reinforcement, as their averages improved more than my other students. 4. Journaling, phone calls home, and Jag Cards contributed to my three lowest performing students raising their averages. One student even raised their average 10 points!

What I Learned and Plan to do Based on my Research 1. I will continue journaling, as it is an effective way of taking notice of the seemingly small praise-worthy actions of my students. 2. I will continue to send Jag Cards home in all my classes and do so frequently. I will also make sure to put specific praise on the post cards. 3. I will make more of an effort to make calls home that are positive rather than negative. 4. I will share my findings with other staff members and colleagues in hopes that they too will begin using positive reinforcement more vigorously in their classrooms.