Tips of the trade: 27. Developing a points system

6th December 2002 at 00:00
For primary pupils aged seven and up, a points system can incorporate Harry Potter. Group points are awarded to the best group, which encourages children to work together and think of others. At the end of the month, the group with the most points wins a sweet andor a trophy or a Hogwarts House Cup, which can be made or bought. The cup then sits at the best group's table for a month.

For individual points, put each child's name on a large chart with space to add numbers. A spreadsheet is good for this, enlarged to A3 size. Children add points to their name as they collect them. The points can be given for good behaviour or work. Each time you mark work, award a stamp, a sticker or a star, all of which have a different value. For example, stamps could be worth two points, stickers five points and stars 10 points. Display a note of their worth beside the point chart.

If there are no stamps, stickers or time, you can put marks in a circle, for instance '+2', alongside the work, which the children can then add to the chart. Using stamps and points in this way encourages children to look at work they have previously completed that was not corrected with the teacher, so they can check for errors or advice.

At the end of each week, the child with the most points is student of the week and wins a sweetpencil and a certificate, which should be displayed in the classroom for a week, then taken home.

Carol Cooke teaches at Bridge of Weir primary school, Renfrewshire. Have you any useful tips for new teachers? We pay pound;50 for all tips published. Send yours to:

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers

Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today