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The Praise Game

The Praise Game

Why should I do it:

  • Classroom misbehavior can reduce time on task and student learning. This intervention can help reinforce positive behaviors.
  • This intervention supports the special needs of Tier II and Tier III students in your class by protecting their self-esteem and avoiding singling them out.

When should I do it:

  • The Praise Game should be played for the whole class period. Ideally, you should play the Praise Game every day to promote consistency with your students.

How do I do it:

  • Separate your students into “Teams” (i.e. by table groups). Write each table name on the board.
  • Teach your students no more than 3 key classroom expectations. Good examples are Follow Instructions, Ignore Distractions, and Participation
  • Set a timer to go off every 3-5 minutes. Whenever the timer goes off, praise and award a point on the board to each team/table that has met all expectations.
  • Note that it is “all or nothing” for each team/table. If one student was missing an expectation, the team/table does not receive the point. They can try again in just a few minutes!
  • At the end of the period, each team that receives at least 80% of the possible points receives a prize (ie pull from a treasure box). If applicable, you can award points/tickets in your school-wide token economy as the prize.

Resources & Support for technique:
(Items with footnotes link to external websites)


  1. (2015). Praise Timer[].