If you’re a VIPKID teacher, you know the importance of implementing reward systems in your virtual classroom! However, remembering to use secondary rewards in addition to the virtual stars in class can be a daunting task…especially as a new teacher. But, the Find-A-Star reward system is the perfect starting point!
You see, the system is really easy to use. It requires minimal preparation, takes up just a small amount of space, and integrates perfectly with the virtual stars. Truthfully, it takes a little bit of the initial fear of “forgetting something during class” out of the equation, and therefore, it’s a winner in my book!
How Find-A-Star Works
The premise is simple.
Create or choose a reward sheet, or “board” that has 12 images and stars, and place it on a small cookie sheet using magnets. (You can also use tape or sticky tack.) When your student does a good job, he/she picks a number. Simply remove the number to reveal the picture or star beneath. That’s all there is to it!
The kids love it and are always so excited to find their stars. My favorite thing about the Find-A-Star reward is the fact that when a star is revealed, it’s a reminder to me to click the stars on the screen. No more forgetting the virtual stars!
Where Do I Find the Reward Boards?
Well, you have two options.
Option 1-You can create your own boards and numbers. This will take time and energy, but you can certainly do it. You’ll need to go online and find images to fill your 12 spaces. Consider making several different ones so that the stars are not always under the same numbers. (Trust me, the kids will figure this out quickly and the reward will lose some of its luster.)
Option 2-You can take the easy route, and it will only cost you $5.00. I created 2 different sets of reward boards bundles with each set containing 40 unique boards. The original, and best-selling, Find-A-Star Reward Boards Bundle and Find-A-Star Reward Boards Volume 2. Each set includes the cover numbers.
When I created these, I wanted to have enough reward boards to get through an entire month of classes without repeating. Of course, once I completed these bundles, I knew I had to share them with you! (You can find this, along with all of my other VIPKID resources, in my TpT store.)
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What magnets do you use?
This is actually a question that I have been asked before, and I wanted to make sure that I told you about my magnets of choice. I use neodymium magnets. These are basically little, tiny magnets that are ridiculously strong.
I ordered mine almost 2 years ago from some random online company and they took several weeks to arrive. However, you can find the same type of magnets on Amazon. I put one magnet on the back of each number, and then I connect the reward sheet to the cookie sheet using one magnet in each of the four corners.
I place the “corner” magnets on top of the laminated reward sheet and they hold the sheet in place perfectly. Then, when I place each laminated number on the reward sheet, these hold up perfectly as well.
5 Quick Tips and Tricks
Even though this is a really simple reward system to use, it still helps to have tips from someone who’s already used it successfully. So, I have five helpful hints to make implementing this reward system seamless.
- Allow your students to choose 2 numbers at a time. This will keep you from having to stop the lesson 12 different times to reveal every space. (Sometimes if I’m running short on time, I will even let them choose 3 numbers.)
- Use the same board for all of your students on a given day. I typically use gender-neutral boards to make transitioning through 6 back-to-back classes a whole lot easier. All I have to do is put the numbers over the pictures and I’m ready for my next class. 🙂
- When I use this with my Pre-VIP students, I pick the numbers for them since most of them are not familiar with all of the numbers yet. Then, as I choose the number, I say it out loud so they have the opportunity to hear the number spoken in English. Sometimes, I will even have them repeat the number if they are far enough along in their VIPKID journey.
- For durability purposes, laminate your boards and numbers. It takes a little bit of extra time, but I promise you will be so glad you did!
- Apply Mod Podge or a matte spray to lessen the glare from the laminated boards. I, personally, have used Mod Podge because it’s what I already had, but a matte spray will work just as well.
Remember, friend, not that long ago, I was a new VIPKID teacher, too. I wanted to have all of these amazing reward systems for my students, and I spent so much time and money, creating rewards that were sometimes hits and other times flops.
But, if I’d known about the Find-A-Star reward system when I first began, I would’ve started with it and never looked back. It’s such a simple system that I am confident your students will love just as much as mine do!
If you want to read more about VIPKid, you can check out these posts.
- What is VIPKid?
- 15 VIPKid Words & Abbreviations You Need to Know
- The Ultimate VIPKid Props Guide
- 10 Cheap and Easy VIPKid Background Ideas
- How to Use TPR in Your VIPKid Classroom
- How to Organize the Chaos of VIPKid Props
- 5 Quick Ways to Look Like a VIPKid Teaching Pro