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100 Squares is a class-wide motivation system that is a combination of tic-tac-toe and bingo. A board of 100 squares, each one numbered, is used as a game board. As the class exhibits positive behaviors, they draw a number and fill in the chart one square at a time. When an entire row is filled in, the class earns a reward.

Create a large grid with 10 rows and 10 columns of squares on a poster, flip chart, or bulletin board. Number each square from 1 to 100. Be sure to have one chart for each group of students you teach.

Determine the targeted behaviors that will allow the class to earn a square. They can be general, but it is also good to have some specific behaviors. For example, the class gets a square if all students participate in clean up during a transition. Be sure to explain to the students how squares can be earned. Post a list of targeted behaviors so that students are constantly reminded which behaviors need to be shown by everyone in order to earn a square.

It is helpful to get student input when determining the reward. The reward should be something the entire class can enjoy, such as choosing your seat for a week, hat day, extra recess, etc. See the lists posted to the right on this webpage for more reward ideas.

Tokens can be plastic chips, pieces of cardstock paper, popsicle sticks, or any small object that can be numbered 1-100 and kept in a small container. As the class exhibits a positive behavior, one student will pull from this container to determine which square to fill in on the chart.

As the class performs the targeted behaviors, choose one student to draw a token from the container and fill in a square on the grid. For example, if a student pulls the token with the number 9 on it, he or she fills in the square labeled 9 on the chart. Be sure to use a system which allows all students to have a chance to complete this task in order to build a sense of community within the classroom. I-Pad name randomization applications or popsicle sticks with students’ names are two good ways to ensure that all students are included.

The class wins the reward when an entire row of 10 squares is filled in. Rows can be completed horizontally, vertically, or diagonally.

This reward system can be used throughout the entire school year. It needs to be explained at the beginning of use so that students fully understand how they can earn squares and rewards. It is important that the teacher keeps up with the system and consistently awards squares. If it is not implemented consistently, students will lose interest in the system.

When creating the 100 Squares Chart, special squares can be created by adding a star or special symbol to that square. When a student draws this number and fills in this square, the class earns a small, immediate reward. See visuals on the right to see an example of a traditional 100-square chart and one with the special squares.

Rather than winning by completing a row of 10 squares, the goal could be to complete a different pattern such as an “X” or filling in the perimeter of the chart.

If the class has won several times on the 10x10 square chart, increase the size to 11x11 or even 12x12. In this case, a class will have to earn more squares before getting the reward. It may also be advisable to begin with a smaller chart (5x5) in a class where behavior is especially challenging. Allowing students to earn a reward more quickly can increase motivation. Once the first reward is earned, increase the size of the board to raise expectations for targeted behaviors.

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