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Let’s teach delayed gratification

Date: January 28th, 2016
By: Polly Bath

Polly Bath: I have an exercise I do in my class to teach delayed gratification.

I make an announcement on MONDAY morning, I say to the kids, “Ok, on FRIDAY at 2:05, I’m going to announce something fantastic that we’re going to be doing. I can’t wait to tell you, but I’m not going to tell you until 2:05 on Friday afternoon.” I will even put on the board, “2:05 Friday, don’t forget, exciting news!”

Well, what do you think the kids do all week?

ALL week they ask what the exciting news is. They say to me, “We promise to be good, just tell us!” But I reply, “I’ll tell you on Friday at 2:05.” And I really hold true to that.

Delayed gratification is a good thing.

Then, when 2:05 on Friday comes, I say, “It’s Friday and it’s 2:05. So, here is the exciting news: you guys have done so good this week, on Monday we’re going to have a pizza party!” Or whatever I’ve invented.

Now the kids are excited! They know what the news was and that they’ve been good all week. And they have something to look forward to on Monday.

I want to internalize the kids motivation, I want kids to like school!