Brag Bands: Building Character Edition

Building character is one of those activities that sometimes gets overlooked in the classroom because there is just so much more to cover.  Not to mention these behaviors aren’t necessarily going to be tested on the standardized assessments (to which the teacher is publicly held accountable for).

Good character traits aren’t always modeled at home or in the child’s community, so taking the time every day to develop these skills is super important.

We might be educating the next Einstein, but we also hope he or she wants to make the world a better place with that knowledge too.

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

Character Building Activities

Character-building comes in various forms:  games, discussion questions, class or team building lessons, and even online options.  For me, I have found in my experience that the best motivator for better classroom citizens is encouraging those “teachable moments” by celebrating when good choices are made on a daily basis.

In that frame of mind, I am super excited to show you a a tip for reinforcing those little acts of kindness that sometimes happen without fanfare:  Brag Bands!

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

They are super easy to make and use!

Start by grabbing some printable bands.  I found mine at my local big box store, but you can save yourself a trip by grabbing them on Amazon HERE instead.

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

You can make your own, or grab 50 already-created-for-you bands HERE.

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

After you have your bands ready to roll, the process is even easier:  look for the behaviors listed on the bands and award a few each day to deserving students.  Pop them on their wrist to wear proudly all day and even show parents at home!

If the entire staff also wants to participate, they will also notice the bands throughout the hallway and have an opportunity to comment or ask questions of the awarded student.

Want to make it so everyone has a chance?  Grab a plastic cup and fill it with popsicle sticks – one child’s name per stick.  Grab a couple out each day and specifically look for a positive behavior to award a band by the end of the day.

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

Or maybe instead you prefer to choose 1-3 bands to be a featured focus for the day.

You can simply use a magnet to display the bands on the board as a great reminder visual and then award the bands at the end of the day to the students who displayed the day’s positive trait.  It doesn’t take more than a few minutes to discuss the focus activity of the day – and all students will actively be practicing the task.

Would you like a set of 50 pre-made Brag Bands to print and use for your students?   Students, parents, and administrators will love them too! 

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

Click HERE to grab them now!

Now, before I get comments like “Why are we rewarding children for doing things they should be doing anyway?” I have a quick comment:  Some children do these things naturally.  Others don’t always have the best modeling outside of school.

Do you always need to make a big fuss when a child holds the door open for others without being told?  Absolutely not.  But the first few times it happens on its own, why not draw attention to it so other students learn good manners and proper etiquette.  You’re going to be there anyway.

Even better?  Celebrating the whole child.  Not just the social skills that involve sitting quietly or printing neatly all the time.  Using teachable moments to display front and center children who are growing up to be kind, compassionate, and thoughtful individuals is more important than ever.

Character Building Quotes

Need some great quotes to get your discussions started in class?  Here are a few I found via Pinterest that really fit the bill!

Wrong is still wrong, as right is still right – even if it isn’t being acknowledged.  This would be a great message to convey for those students who are upset about not getting recognized with a brag band.

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

Being open-minded is super important to teach littles.  {Maybe even some adults as well.}

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

I love this sentiment because it reinforces that sometimes doing the right thing isn’t always easy.  But it can be so much more rewarding.

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

The Golden Rule always has a place in my classroom and in my home with my own children.  And it is repeated quite frequently – ha!

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

Teaching active listening skills is HARD!  {Need some help?   Check out THIS POST.}  Hopefully using this quote will help to guide some students to remember to hear more and talk less.

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

Last up:  Celebrating each other.  Jealousy of others causes lots of bullying issues.  The earlier we start to teach children to feel good when another feels good, the better.

Building character in students should be an everyday task. I love this tip to develop strong character building behaviors in the classroom.

Brag Bands are certainly an easy way to start these important conversations with students and make a “game” of it until it becomes second nature.  Practice will make perfect and I can’t think of anything I would rather students practice than growing up to be good humans who will make a positive impact in our world.

How do you teach building character in your classroom?  We would love to hear your ideas below in a comment too!

Don’t forget to download your Brag Band Set HERE.

~Charity
Charity Preston Bio Pic

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