I mentioned PAT a few days ago and have been getting some requests for examples.
The idea of Preferred Activity Time as a positive consequence for desirable class behavior comes from Fred Jones’ book “Tools for Teaching””. On his web site he has many ideas, and you may want to check there (www.fredjones.com, look in the PAT Bank). There are hundreds of great ideas, but having a repertoire of just a few winner activities tailored for your subject that kids understand and anticipate are all you really need.
Here are a couple of PAT activities that have worked with my students:
Trashketball is an easy, no prep PAT game based on both knowledge and skill.
–Two teams, everybody plays in order.
–One person from each team stands in front of the MC–the MC is the teacher at first, but a student classroom job later.
–MC says a word or phrase (in Spanish) that we have been working on in that class.
–First one to say it in English gets a point for their team AND the chance to shoot a wad of paper into the trash can.
–Use varying degrees of difficulty based on distance from the trashcan: 5, 10, 20 and 50 points.
–Write the all time high team scores on the board as motivator for other classes.
–Candy for the winners, or they just get a non-tangible like leaving class first.
Bebé Malo is a counting game similar to “Hide the Thimble”
–We have an ugly baby doll nicknamed “El Bebé Malo” (idea from Joe Nielson) in our class.
–A student leaves the room.
–Another students hides the Bebé Malo.
–First student reenters the room and tries to find the Bebé Malo.
–Other students in the room count chorally in Spanish–soft for far away, loud for nearby.
–We write the number it takes to find the Bebé on the board in the Bebé Malo Hall of Fame/Shame.
–This can only be played for 10 minutes or so before it starts to get old. But if you use it sparingly, students will want to come back to it again and again–even in higher level classes, and that’s OK.
–You may have to help the kids by counting aloud with them at first and by encouraging them with arm motions to count loud /soft to give the seeker proximity clues, but do not train them that YOU, the teacher, are doing all of the counting. You help them get going and encourage them, but they are doing the loud/soft counting, otherwise it will be too hard on your voice.
I will explain more activities later.