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The title of today’s Partner blog is from Quint Studer’s book Hardwiring Excellence: Purpose, Worthwhile Work, and Making a Difference, a BusinessWeek National Bestseller (2003), in addition to the following paragraph:

One of the things I’ve learned about reward and recognition is that you don’t have to ration or worry about limiting it. You don’t have to worry if there’s enough to go around. Rewarded behavior creates more behavior to reward, which creates more results—which creates more alignment throughout the organization…

This is an example of cascaded reward and recognition from Freaky (SCIENCE) Friday Family Day at Montclair Elementary School on November 30:

Math/Science Coach Rewards and Recognizes Teachers

I want to say THANK YOU for all of your help in making “Freaky Friday Family Day” such a huge success. It was obvious that parents and students enjoyed the activities you had planned for them… lots of smiling faces. I enjoyed visiting your classrooms and seeing all the action!!

Pictures are coming soon, but here’s a list of the different science investigations/experiments that happened around the school during this event:

  • Pre-K- Ten science stations including a melting snowman investigation to learn about changing states of matter; leaf investigations using science tools; and mixing colors using droppers.
  • Kindergarten- Sinking and Floating Investigations
  • 1st Grade- Students made “Boom Boom Bags” that exploded when they mixed vinegar and baking soda to investigate changing states of matter through chemical reactions
  • 2nd Grade- Students watched a short video of tornadoes and learned more about the formation of tornadoes using a model. This was followed up with group collaboration and response activities.
  • 3rd Grade- Students investigated how blubber protects animals in arctic regions, by making and experimenting with “Blubber Gloves”
  • 4th Grade- Ms. Eagle’s class made “Oobleck” to investigate changing states of matter.
    Ms. McMillian’s class engaged in a problem solving experiment designing a container that would protect an egg when dropped inside.
  • 5th Grade- Students investigated different forms of weathering through a hands-on activity using vinegar and different sizes of chalk to represent landforms. They followed-up with a walk around the school campus to find examples of weathering.

On behalf of Montclair’s Science Committee, THANK YOU for a wonderful afternoon!

School Leaders Reward and Recognize Coach and Teachers

Thank you to all of our teachers for their efforts and participation in the “Freaky Friday Family Day” this past Friday. The parents were making positive comments as they were leaving. These are the kinds of special events that get parents talking us up in the public and help them feel better about the educational strengths of our teachers in our school. Great job teachers! GREAT STUFF!!!!! A special thank you to Mrs. Tindell for all of her planning and preparation for this fun family event. Tindell was so excited about what all of you did with your students and families!!! She was gleaming!

Mrs. Tindell, THANK YOU for all of your help in making “Freaky Friday Family Day” such a huge success. It was obvious that parents and students enjoyed the activities you had planned for them… lots of smiling faces. I enjoyed visiting your classrooms and seeing all the action!!”

 District Science Supervisor Rewards and Recognizes School-wide Efforts

I really enjoyed visiting the classes this afternoon. The classes where teachers allowed the students and parents to interact with the activity were great. I know you were pleased with the parent turnout. Ms. McMillian had a great lesson on the egg drop. I also liked the story that Ms. Sykes was reading to go along with the activity that they were going to do on floating and sinking. 1st, 3rd and 5th grade seemed very prepared as a group for the event. Please tell them GREAT JOB! Hope you are able to do this again.”

Near the end of Hardwiring Excellence Studer writes that individuals are surprised by the impact of reward and recognition. He then shares a story about how he connected in a purposeful way with his nephew Brian:

All I ever did was role model what [individuals] did for me. I noticed the positive and helped him feel purpose. I rewarded and recognized his successes in small ways. It’s the little things that make a big difference in a relationship. It’s all about role modeling…. What a gift we’ve been given to… make a difference in the lives of others. In return for our willingness to serve, we receive a great gift: purpose, worthwhile work, and making a difference.


Check out the cool things happening this year at Montclair Elementary School in Pensacola, Florida, on their website.

Studer, Quint. (2003). Hardwiring Excellence: Purpose, Worthwhile Work, and Making a Difference. Gulf Breeze, FL: Fire Starter Publishing. Available here.

Our mission at Studer Education is to provide students with a great place to learn, teachers with a great place to teach, and parents with confidence that their children are getting a great education. To do this we work with school boards, leaders, and employees to apply Evidence-Based continuous improvement processes and the principles from How to Lead Teachers to Become Great in their districts as they aim for excellence in every district department and in every school as they strive to improve teacher performance and student achievement. Visit us online at http://studereducation.com to learn more about Studer Education Teacher Development Institutes (TDIs), Leader Development Institutes (LDIs), and Evidence-Based Leadership.