10 Incentives Guaranteed to Improve Middle School Behavior

How to utilize incentives with middle school students and engagement strategies for middle grades students.
By 
Jordan Pruitt
 | 
September 20, 2022

They compose engaging lessons but are able to pivot and change their facilitation as needed to ensure success. They wear many hats as their students have many needs. 

I once had a schedule that had me split days between high school and middle school. I’m a planner. I take a curriculum map and make a copy for myself. I then break it down into units. 

Then I break the units down into months. Then the months into weeks. Then the weeks into daily lessons. Then I add hyperlinks to the daily lessons. 

So I have a very over-the-top planning calendar for my classes. I’m not alone in this. Some of you go way deeper than I do! 

My background is in high school, and my lesson planning method has served me well in that role. The reason I mention this is that when I got this assignment for middle school I did the same process for that class as I did my others. 

What I found was that I had a lot of preconceptions about pacing that needed to be adjusted for that course. This may seem obvious, but your grade level matters! 

I had lessons that took too much time. Not enough time. Lessons that didn’t engage at the level I expected. Lessons that engaged so well they created classroom management issues! 

The point I’m making here is that I learned a great deal about teaching from this group of middle schoolers. They probably taught me as much as I taught them! That is what made it so much fun! 

Aside from the mechanics of planning and teaching I also found that the incentives I had been using with my high schoolers weren’t the same motivators for these students. 

I had to come up with a different incentive plan that met their wants and interests. 

Why are Incentives Important For Middle School?

An incentive is anything that motivates or encourages one to do something. It can be for products and services that a company needs to sell at a higher volume. Maybe they impact our health.

Incentives are extremely useful and successful at accelerating programs that need a boost. Educators would like to teach rooms full of self-motivated, eagerness to learn, ready to succeed students. 

But if you have ever stood in front of a group of 7th graders on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, you know that isn’t always the case! Sometimes you need a little something extra to get your lesson over the finish line.

Considering how many advertisements you see with “deals”, “discounts”, or “coupons” it would appear that businesses feel like incentive programs don’t just work, they are necessary for business. 

The government offers tax breaks on things they want us to buy more of. They offer cash for programs they want to see succeed like my district offering a small cash bonus for teachers to get their covid vaccine. 

It would seem that the government values incentives just as much as business. 

Educators should value incentives as well. We need to reach the unreachable. We need to stimulate the unmotivated. We need to push those who do barely enough. We need to provide a carrot for the high achievers to go above and beyond what they thought they could do. 

If you're a middle school teacher you know that motivation and morale matter a great deal. Not just for student engagement and success, but for your sanity as well! 

We need to utilize incentives with our students. Keep reading for some ideas on how to engage your middle schoolers in the learning process with incentives.

Incentives Guaranteed to Improve Behavior

1. Fidgets

Keep a class set of fidgets for students to access and play with if they meet goals. Fidget spinners, mini skateboards, stress balls, finger traps, etc.

Middle School Student Incentives

2. Drinks

Have a mini-fridge in your room? Stock it with kids' drinks like Capri-Suns or Kool-Aid Jammers. Offer those as rewards for meeting classroom expectations.

3. Stickers

We have mentioned this one before, everyone likes stickers! 

Middle School Student Incentives

4. Dress Code Exemptions

Theme days that emphasize wearing fun or silly things that are normally out of the dress code are always a fun way to incentivize students or just to break up the monotony of the school year.

5. Homework Passes

Print out passes and laminate them. Allow students to earn them for academic goals.

Middle School Student Incentives

6. Movement Breaks

Build-in movement breaks for your classes. Announce them ahead of time and with the caveat that your students meet a short-term goal to get there.

7. The Great Outdoors 

This one isn’t age-specific. We all need a little sunshine sometimes. In fact, if I finish this article before lunch I will be eating outside today. See, works for adults as well!

Middle School Student Incentives

8. Preferential Seating

This could be within your seating chart or you may provide some alternative seating options like different chairs, beanbags, or carpets.

9. Extension Choices

Allow students to choose from a variety of extension activities if they meet your daily goals. These can be cheaply created and re-used all year long.

10. Keep Score

When in doubt, I like to appeal to students' competitive instincts. No better way than to start keeping score. 

Make your big exam review into a game. Split them up into teams. Elect captains. Name a scorekeeper. Keep it fun.

Go all out. Wear a referee jersey if you got it.

Middle School Student Incentives

Keeping it Positive

Teaching middle school is certainly challenging. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun! There is no better incentive than injecting a little fun into your daily routine. 

If you utilize the ideas above or use your own, the key to any of these is keeping it positive. Be careful not to incentivize with the threat of punishment. 

Sure you can intimidate your way to short-term success, but your short-term gains will hamper your long-term progress as you will be sacrificing morale and relationships for immediate motivation. 

Have fun with it and you’ll create a “get to” mindset instead of a “have to” one. Don't teach middle school? We also have some great ideas for elementary school incentives and high school incentives as well! Need more help motivating middle school student students? Check out our guide to using student voice to create prizes for middle school students.

Teaching middle school requires a unique skill set and temperament. The most successful middle school educators are able to have high expectations while still having patience and empathy for their students.

They compose engaging lessons but are able to pivot and change their facilitation as needed to ensure success. They wear many hats as their students have many needs. 

I once had a schedule that had me split days between high school and middle school. I’m a planner. I take a curriculum map and make a copy for myself. I then break it down into units. 

Then I break the units down into months. Then the months into weeks. Then the weeks into daily lessons. Then I add hyperlinks to the daily lessons. 

So I have a very over-the-top planning calendar for my classes. I’m not alone in this. Some of you go way deeper than I do! 

My background is in high school, and my lesson planning method has served me well in that role. The reason I mention this is that when I got this assignment for middle school I did the same process for that class as I did my others. 

What I found was that I had a lot of preconceptions about pacing that needed to be adjusted for that course. This may seem obvious, but your grade level matters! 

I had lessons that took too much time. Not enough time. Lessons that didn’t engage at the level I expected. Lessons that engaged so well they created classroom management issues! 

The point I’m making here is that I learned a great deal about teaching from this group of middle schoolers. They probably taught me as much as I taught them! That is what made it so much fun! 

Aside from the mechanics of planning and teaching I also found that the incentives I had been using with my high schoolers weren’t the same motivators for these students. 

I had to come up with a different incentive plan that met their wants and interests. 

Why are Incentives Important For Middle School?

An incentive is anything that motivates or encourages one to do something. It can be for products and services that a company needs to sell at a higher volume. Maybe they impact our health.

Incentives are extremely useful and successful at accelerating programs that need a boost. Educators would like to teach rooms full of self-motivated, eagerness to learn, ready to succeed students. 

But if you have ever stood in front of a group of 7th graders on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, you know that isn’t always the case! Sometimes you need a little something extra to get your lesson over the finish line.

Considering how many advertisements you see with “deals”, “discounts”, or “coupons” it would appear that businesses feel like incentive programs don’t just work, they are necessary for business. 

The government offers tax breaks on things they want us to buy more of. They offer cash for programs they want to see succeed like my district offering a small cash bonus for teachers to get their covid vaccine. 

It would seem that the government values incentives just as much as business. 

Educators should value incentives as well. We need to reach the unreachable. We need to stimulate the unmotivated. We need to push those who do barely enough. We need to provide a carrot for the high achievers to go above and beyond what they thought they could do. 

If you're a middle school teacher you know that motivation and morale matter a great deal. Not just for student engagement and success, but for your sanity as well! 

We need to utilize incentives with our students. Keep reading for some ideas on how to engage your middle schoolers in the learning process with incentives.

Incentives Guaranteed to Improve Behavior

1. Fidgets

Keep a class set of fidgets for students to access and play with if they meet goals. Fidget spinners, mini skateboards, stress balls, finger traps, etc.

Middle School Student Incentives

2. Drinks

Have a mini-fridge in your room? Stock it with kids' drinks like Capri-Suns or Kool-Aid Jammers. Offer those as rewards for meeting classroom expectations.

3. Stickers

We have mentioned this one before, everyone likes stickers! 

Middle School Student Incentives

4. Dress Code Exemptions

Theme days that emphasize wearing fun or silly things that are normally out of the dress code are always a fun way to incentivize students or just to break up the monotony of the school year.

5. Homework Passes

Print out passes and laminate them. Allow students to earn them for academic goals.

Middle School Student Incentives

6. Movement Breaks

Build-in movement breaks for your classes. Announce them ahead of time and with the caveat that your students meet a short-term goal to get there.

7. The Great Outdoors 

This one isn’t age-specific. We all need a little sunshine sometimes. In fact, if I finish this article before lunch I will be eating outside today. See, works for adults as well!

Middle School Student Incentives

8. Preferential Seating

This could be within your seating chart or you may provide some alternative seating options like different chairs, beanbags, or carpets.

9. Extension Choices

Allow students to choose from a variety of extension activities if they meet your daily goals. These can be cheaply created and re-used all year long.

10. Keep Score

When in doubt, I like to appeal to students' competitive instincts. No better way than to start keeping score. 

Make your big exam review into a game. Split them up into teams. Elect captains. Name a scorekeeper. Keep it fun.

Go all out. Wear a referee jersey if you got it.

Middle School Student Incentives

Keeping it Positive

Teaching middle school is certainly challenging. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun! There is no better incentive than injecting a little fun into your daily routine. 

If you utilize the ideas above or use your own, the key to any of these is keeping it positive. Be careful not to incentivize with the threat of punishment. 

Sure you can intimidate your way to short-term success, but your short-term gains will hamper your long-term progress as you will be sacrificing morale and relationships for immediate motivation. 

Have fun with it and you’ll create a “get to” mindset instead of a “have to” one. Don't teach middle school? We also have some great ideas for elementary school incentives and high school incentives as well! Need more help motivating middle school student students? Check out our guide to using student voice to create prizes for middle school students.

They compose engaging lessons but are able to pivot and change their facilitation as needed to ensure success. They wear many hats as their students have many needs. 

I once had a schedule that had me split days between high school and middle school. I’m a planner. I take a curriculum map and make a copy for myself. I then break it down into units. 

Then I break the units down into months. Then the months into weeks. Then the weeks into daily lessons. Then I add hyperlinks to the daily lessons. 

So I have a very over-the-top planning calendar for my classes. I’m not alone in this. Some of you go way deeper than I do! 

My background is in high school, and my lesson planning method has served me well in that role. The reason I mention this is that when I got this assignment for middle school I did the same process for that class as I did my others. 

What I found was that I had a lot of preconceptions about pacing that needed to be adjusted for that course. This may seem obvious, but your grade level matters! 

I had lessons that took too much time. Not enough time. Lessons that didn’t engage at the level I expected. Lessons that engaged so well they created classroom management issues! 

The point I’m making here is that I learned a great deal about teaching from this group of middle schoolers. They probably taught me as much as I taught them! That is what made it so much fun! 

Aside from the mechanics of planning and teaching I also found that the incentives I had been using with my high schoolers weren’t the same motivators for these students. 

I had to come up with a different incentive plan that met their wants and interests. 

Why are Incentives Important For Middle School?

An incentive is anything that motivates or encourages one to do something. It can be for products and services that a company needs to sell at a higher volume. Maybe they impact our health.

Incentives are extremely useful and successful at accelerating programs that need a boost. Educators would like to teach rooms full of self-motivated, eagerness to learn, ready to succeed students. 

But if you have ever stood in front of a group of 7th graders on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, you know that isn’t always the case! Sometimes you need a little something extra to get your lesson over the finish line.

Considering how many advertisements you see with “deals”, “discounts”, or “coupons” it would appear that businesses feel like incentive programs don’t just work, they are necessary for business. 

The government offers tax breaks on things they want us to buy more of. They offer cash for programs they want to see succeed like my district offering a small cash bonus for teachers to get their covid vaccine. 

It would seem that the government values incentives just as much as business. 

Educators should value incentives as well. We need to reach the unreachable. We need to stimulate the unmotivated. We need to push those who do barely enough. We need to provide a carrot for the high achievers to go above and beyond what they thought they could do. 

If you're a middle school teacher you know that motivation and morale matter a great deal. Not just for student engagement and success, but for your sanity as well! 

We need to utilize incentives with our students. Keep reading for some ideas on how to engage your middle schoolers in the learning process with incentives.

Incentives Guaranteed to Improve Behavior

1. Fidgets

Keep a class set of fidgets for students to access and play with if they meet goals. Fidget spinners, mini skateboards, stress balls, finger traps, etc.

Middle School Student Incentives

2. Drinks

Have a mini-fridge in your room? Stock it with kids' drinks like Capri-Suns or Kool-Aid Jammers. Offer those as rewards for meeting classroom expectations.

3. Stickers

We have mentioned this one before, everyone likes stickers! 

Middle School Student Incentives

4. Dress Code Exemptions

Theme days that emphasize wearing fun or silly things that are normally out of the dress code are always a fun way to incentivize students or just to break up the monotony of the school year.

5. Homework Passes

Print out passes and laminate them. Allow students to earn them for academic goals.

Middle School Student Incentives

6. Movement Breaks

Build-in movement breaks for your classes. Announce them ahead of time and with the caveat that your students meet a short-term goal to get there.

7. The Great Outdoors 

This one isn’t age-specific. We all need a little sunshine sometimes. In fact, if I finish this article before lunch I will be eating outside today. See, works for adults as well!

Middle School Student Incentives

8. Preferential Seating

This could be within your seating chart or you may provide some alternative seating options like different chairs, beanbags, or carpets.

9. Extension Choices

Allow students to choose from a variety of extension activities if they meet your daily goals. These can be cheaply created and re-used all year long.

10. Keep Score

When in doubt, I like to appeal to students' competitive instincts. No better way than to start keeping score. 

Make your big exam review into a game. Split them up into teams. Elect captains. Name a scorekeeper. Keep it fun.

Go all out. Wear a referee jersey if you got it.

Middle School Student Incentives

Keeping it Positive

Teaching middle school is certainly challenging. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun! There is no better incentive than injecting a little fun into your daily routine. 

If you utilize the ideas above or use your own, the key to any of these is keeping it positive. Be careful not to incentivize with the threat of punishment. 

Sure you can intimidate your way to short-term success, but your short-term gains will hamper your long-term progress as you will be sacrificing morale and relationships for immediate motivation. 

Have fun with it and you’ll create a “get to” mindset instead of a “have to” one. Don't teach middle school? We also have some great ideas for elementary school incentives and high school incentives as well! Need more help motivating middle school student students? Check out our guide to using student voice to create prizes for middle school students.

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They compose engaging lessons but are able to pivot and change their facilitation as needed to ensure success. They wear many hats as their students have many needs. 

I once had a schedule that had me split days between high school and middle school. I’m a planner. I take a curriculum map and make a copy for myself. I then break it down into units. 

Then I break the units down into months. Then the months into weeks. Then the weeks into daily lessons. Then I add hyperlinks to the daily lessons. 

So I have a very over-the-top planning calendar for my classes. I’m not alone in this. Some of you go way deeper than I do! 

My background is in high school, and my lesson planning method has served me well in that role. The reason I mention this is that when I got this assignment for middle school I did the same process for that class as I did my others. 

What I found was that I had a lot of preconceptions about pacing that needed to be adjusted for that course. This may seem obvious, but your grade level matters! 

I had lessons that took too much time. Not enough time. Lessons that didn’t engage at the level I expected. Lessons that engaged so well they created classroom management issues! 

The point I’m making here is that I learned a great deal about teaching from this group of middle schoolers. They probably taught me as much as I taught them! That is what made it so much fun! 

Aside from the mechanics of planning and teaching I also found that the incentives I had been using with my high schoolers weren’t the same motivators for these students. 

I had to come up with a different incentive plan that met their wants and interests. 

Why are Incentives Important For Middle School?

An incentive is anything that motivates or encourages one to do something. It can be for products and services that a company needs to sell at a higher volume. Maybe they impact our health.

Incentives are extremely useful and successful at accelerating programs that need a boost. Educators would like to teach rooms full of self-motivated, eagerness to learn, ready to succeed students. 

But if you have ever stood in front of a group of 7th graders on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, you know that isn’t always the case! Sometimes you need a little something extra to get your lesson over the finish line.

Considering how many advertisements you see with “deals”, “discounts”, or “coupons” it would appear that businesses feel like incentive programs don’t just work, they are necessary for business. 

The government offers tax breaks on things they want us to buy more of. They offer cash for programs they want to see succeed like my district offering a small cash bonus for teachers to get their covid vaccine. 

It would seem that the government values incentives just as much as business. 

Educators should value incentives as well. We need to reach the unreachable. We need to stimulate the unmotivated. We need to push those who do barely enough. We need to provide a carrot for the high achievers to go above and beyond what they thought they could do. 

If you're a middle school teacher you know that motivation and morale matter a great deal. Not just for student engagement and success, but for your sanity as well! 

We need to utilize incentives with our students. Keep reading for some ideas on how to engage your middle schoolers in the learning process with incentives.

Incentives Guaranteed to Improve Behavior

1. Fidgets

Keep a class set of fidgets for students to access and play with if they meet goals. Fidget spinners, mini skateboards, stress balls, finger traps, etc.

Middle School Student Incentives

2. Drinks

Have a mini-fridge in your room? Stock it with kids' drinks like Capri-Suns or Kool-Aid Jammers. Offer those as rewards for meeting classroom expectations.

3. Stickers

We have mentioned this one before, everyone likes stickers! 

Middle School Student Incentives

4. Dress Code Exemptions

Theme days that emphasize wearing fun or silly things that are normally out of the dress code are always a fun way to incentivize students or just to break up the monotony of the school year.

5. Homework Passes

Print out passes and laminate them. Allow students to earn them for academic goals.

Middle School Student Incentives

6. Movement Breaks

Build-in movement breaks for your classes. Announce them ahead of time and with the caveat that your students meet a short-term goal to get there.

7. The Great Outdoors 

This one isn’t age-specific. We all need a little sunshine sometimes. In fact, if I finish this article before lunch I will be eating outside today. See, works for adults as well!

Middle School Student Incentives

8. Preferential Seating

This could be within your seating chart or you may provide some alternative seating options like different chairs, beanbags, or carpets.

9. Extension Choices

Allow students to choose from a variety of extension activities if they meet your daily goals. These can be cheaply created and re-used all year long.

10. Keep Score

When in doubt, I like to appeal to students' competitive instincts. No better way than to start keeping score. 

Make your big exam review into a game. Split them up into teams. Elect captains. Name a scorekeeper. Keep it fun.

Go all out. Wear a referee jersey if you got it.

Middle School Student Incentives

Keeping it Positive

Teaching middle school is certainly challenging. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun! There is no better incentive than injecting a little fun into your daily routine. 

If you utilize the ideas above or use your own, the key to any of these is keeping it positive. Be careful not to incentivize with the threat of punishment. 

Sure you can intimidate your way to short-term success, but your short-term gains will hamper your long-term progress as you will be sacrificing morale and relationships for immediate motivation. 

Have fun with it and you’ll create a “get to” mindset instead of a “have to” one. Don't teach middle school? We also have some great ideas for elementary school incentives and high school incentives as well! Need more help motivating middle school student students? Check out our guide to using student voice to create prizes for middle school students.

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About the Event

They compose engaging lessons but are able to pivot and change their facilitation as needed to ensure success. They wear many hats as their students have many needs. 

I once had a schedule that had me split days between high school and middle school. I’m a planner. I take a curriculum map and make a copy for myself. I then break it down into units. 

Then I break the units down into months. Then the months into weeks. Then the weeks into daily lessons. Then I add hyperlinks to the daily lessons. 

So I have a very over-the-top planning calendar for my classes. I’m not alone in this. Some of you go way deeper than I do! 

My background is in high school, and my lesson planning method has served me well in that role. The reason I mention this is that when I got this assignment for middle school I did the same process for that class as I did my others. 

What I found was that I had a lot of preconceptions about pacing that needed to be adjusted for that course. This may seem obvious, but your grade level matters! 

I had lessons that took too much time. Not enough time. Lessons that didn’t engage at the level I expected. Lessons that engaged so well they created classroom management issues! 

The point I’m making here is that I learned a great deal about teaching from this group of middle schoolers. They probably taught me as much as I taught them! That is what made it so much fun! 

Aside from the mechanics of planning and teaching I also found that the incentives I had been using with my high schoolers weren’t the same motivators for these students. 

I had to come up with a different incentive plan that met their wants and interests. 

Why are Incentives Important For Middle School?

An incentive is anything that motivates or encourages one to do something. It can be for products and services that a company needs to sell at a higher volume. Maybe they impact our health.

Incentives are extremely useful and successful at accelerating programs that need a boost. Educators would like to teach rooms full of self-motivated, eagerness to learn, ready to succeed students. 

But if you have ever stood in front of a group of 7th graders on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, you know that isn’t always the case! Sometimes you need a little something extra to get your lesson over the finish line.

Considering how many advertisements you see with “deals”, “discounts”, or “coupons” it would appear that businesses feel like incentive programs don’t just work, they are necessary for business. 

The government offers tax breaks on things they want us to buy more of. They offer cash for programs they want to see succeed like my district offering a small cash bonus for teachers to get their covid vaccine. 

It would seem that the government values incentives just as much as business. 

Educators should value incentives as well. We need to reach the unreachable. We need to stimulate the unmotivated. We need to push those who do barely enough. We need to provide a carrot for the high achievers to go above and beyond what they thought they could do. 

If you're a middle school teacher you know that motivation and morale matter a great deal. Not just for student engagement and success, but for your sanity as well! 

We need to utilize incentives with our students. Keep reading for some ideas on how to engage your middle schoolers in the learning process with incentives.

Incentives Guaranteed to Improve Behavior

1. Fidgets

Keep a class set of fidgets for students to access and play with if they meet goals. Fidget spinners, mini skateboards, stress balls, finger traps, etc.

Middle School Student Incentives

2. Drinks

Have a mini-fridge in your room? Stock it with kids' drinks like Capri-Suns or Kool-Aid Jammers. Offer those as rewards for meeting classroom expectations.

3. Stickers

We have mentioned this one before, everyone likes stickers! 

Middle School Student Incentives

4. Dress Code Exemptions

Theme days that emphasize wearing fun or silly things that are normally out of the dress code are always a fun way to incentivize students or just to break up the monotony of the school year.

5. Homework Passes

Print out passes and laminate them. Allow students to earn them for academic goals.

Middle School Student Incentives

6. Movement Breaks

Build-in movement breaks for your classes. Announce them ahead of time and with the caveat that your students meet a short-term goal to get there.

7. The Great Outdoors 

This one isn’t age-specific. We all need a little sunshine sometimes. In fact, if I finish this article before lunch I will be eating outside today. See, works for adults as well!

Middle School Student Incentives

8. Preferential Seating

This could be within your seating chart or you may provide some alternative seating options like different chairs, beanbags, or carpets.

9. Extension Choices

Allow students to choose from a variety of extension activities if they meet your daily goals. These can be cheaply created and re-used all year long.

10. Keep Score

When in doubt, I like to appeal to students' competitive instincts. No better way than to start keeping score. 

Make your big exam review into a game. Split them up into teams. Elect captains. Name a scorekeeper. Keep it fun.

Go all out. Wear a referee jersey if you got it.

Middle School Student Incentives

Keeping it Positive

Teaching middle school is certainly challenging. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun! There is no better incentive than injecting a little fun into your daily routine. 

If you utilize the ideas above or use your own, the key to any of these is keeping it positive. Be careful not to incentivize with the threat of punishment. 

Sure you can intimidate your way to short-term success, but your short-term gains will hamper your long-term progress as you will be sacrificing morale and relationships for immediate motivation. 

Have fun with it and you’ll create a “get to” mindset instead of a “have to” one. Don't teach middle school? We also have some great ideas for elementary school incentives and high school incentives as well! Need more help motivating middle school student students? Check out our guide to using student voice to create prizes for middle school students.

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About the Event

They compose engaging lessons but are able to pivot and change their facilitation as needed to ensure success. They wear many hats as their students have many needs. 

I once had a schedule that had me split days between high school and middle school. I’m a planner. I take a curriculum map and make a copy for myself. I then break it down into units. 

Then I break the units down into months. Then the months into weeks. Then the weeks into daily lessons. Then I add hyperlinks to the daily lessons. 

So I have a very over-the-top planning calendar for my classes. I’m not alone in this. Some of you go way deeper than I do! 

My background is in high school, and my lesson planning method has served me well in that role. The reason I mention this is that when I got this assignment for middle school I did the same process for that class as I did my others. 

What I found was that I had a lot of preconceptions about pacing that needed to be adjusted for that course. This may seem obvious, but your grade level matters! 

I had lessons that took too much time. Not enough time. Lessons that didn’t engage at the level I expected. Lessons that engaged so well they created classroom management issues! 

The point I’m making here is that I learned a great deal about teaching from this group of middle schoolers. They probably taught me as much as I taught them! That is what made it so much fun! 

Aside from the mechanics of planning and teaching I also found that the incentives I had been using with my high schoolers weren’t the same motivators for these students. 

I had to come up with a different incentive plan that met their wants and interests. 

Why are Incentives Important For Middle School?

An incentive is anything that motivates or encourages one to do something. It can be for products and services that a company needs to sell at a higher volume. Maybe they impact our health.

Incentives are extremely useful and successful at accelerating programs that need a boost. Educators would like to teach rooms full of self-motivated, eagerness to learn, ready to succeed students. 

But if you have ever stood in front of a group of 7th graders on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, you know that isn’t always the case! Sometimes you need a little something extra to get your lesson over the finish line.

Considering how many advertisements you see with “deals”, “discounts”, or “coupons” it would appear that businesses feel like incentive programs don’t just work, they are necessary for business. 

The government offers tax breaks on things they want us to buy more of. They offer cash for programs they want to see succeed like my district offering a small cash bonus for teachers to get their covid vaccine. 

It would seem that the government values incentives just as much as business. 

Educators should value incentives as well. We need to reach the unreachable. We need to stimulate the unmotivated. We need to push those who do barely enough. We need to provide a carrot for the high achievers to go above and beyond what they thought they could do. 

If you're a middle school teacher you know that motivation and morale matter a great deal. Not just for student engagement and success, but for your sanity as well! 

We need to utilize incentives with our students. Keep reading for some ideas on how to engage your middle schoolers in the learning process with incentives.

Incentives Guaranteed to Improve Behavior

1. Fidgets

Keep a class set of fidgets for students to access and play with if they meet goals. Fidget spinners, mini skateboards, stress balls, finger traps, etc.

Middle School Student Incentives

2. Drinks

Have a mini-fridge in your room? Stock it with kids' drinks like Capri-Suns or Kool-Aid Jammers. Offer those as rewards for meeting classroom expectations.

3. Stickers

We have mentioned this one before, everyone likes stickers! 

Middle School Student Incentives

4. Dress Code Exemptions

Theme days that emphasize wearing fun or silly things that are normally out of the dress code are always a fun way to incentivize students or just to break up the monotony of the school year.

5. Homework Passes

Print out passes and laminate them. Allow students to earn them for academic goals.

Middle School Student Incentives

6. Movement Breaks

Build-in movement breaks for your classes. Announce them ahead of time and with the caveat that your students meet a short-term goal to get there.

7. The Great Outdoors 

This one isn’t age-specific. We all need a little sunshine sometimes. In fact, if I finish this article before lunch I will be eating outside today. See, works for adults as well!

Middle School Student Incentives

8. Preferential Seating

This could be within your seating chart or you may provide some alternative seating options like different chairs, beanbags, or carpets.

9. Extension Choices

Allow students to choose from a variety of extension activities if they meet your daily goals. These can be cheaply created and re-used all year long.

10. Keep Score

When in doubt, I like to appeal to students' competitive instincts. No better way than to start keeping score. 

Make your big exam review into a game. Split them up into teams. Elect captains. Name a scorekeeper. Keep it fun.

Go all out. Wear a referee jersey if you got it.

Middle School Student Incentives

Keeping it Positive

Teaching middle school is certainly challenging. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun! There is no better incentive than injecting a little fun into your daily routine. 

If you utilize the ideas above or use your own, the key to any of these is keeping it positive. Be careful not to incentivize with the threat of punishment. 

Sure you can intimidate your way to short-term success, but your short-term gains will hamper your long-term progress as you will be sacrificing morale and relationships for immediate motivation. 

Have fun with it and you’ll create a “get to” mindset instead of a “have to” one. Don't teach middle school? We also have some great ideas for elementary school incentives and high school incentives as well! Need more help motivating middle school student students? Check out our guide to using student voice to create prizes for middle school students.

About the Presenter

Jordan resides in Lexington, Kentucky. He has experience in Public Education as an Administrator, Science Teacher, and as a Coach. He has extensive experience with School Discipline, PBIS, SEL, Restorative Practices, MTSS, and Trauma-Informed Care.

Teaching middle school requires a unique skill set and temperament. The most successful middle school educators are able to have high expectations while still having patience and empathy for their students.

They compose engaging lessons but are able to pivot and change their facilitation as needed to ensure success. They wear many hats as their students have many needs. 

I once had a schedule that had me split days between high school and middle school. I’m a planner. I take a curriculum map and make a copy for myself. I then break it down into units. 

Then I break the units down into months. Then the months into weeks. Then the weeks into daily lessons. Then I add hyperlinks to the daily lessons. 

So I have a very over-the-top planning calendar for my classes. I’m not alone in this. Some of you go way deeper than I do! 

My background is in high school, and my lesson planning method has served me well in that role. The reason I mention this is that when I got this assignment for middle school I did the same process for that class as I did my others. 

What I found was that I had a lot of preconceptions about pacing that needed to be adjusted for that course. This may seem obvious, but your grade level matters! 

I had lessons that took too much time. Not enough time. Lessons that didn’t engage at the level I expected. Lessons that engaged so well they created classroom management issues! 

The point I’m making here is that I learned a great deal about teaching from this group of middle schoolers. They probably taught me as much as I taught them! That is what made it so much fun! 

Aside from the mechanics of planning and teaching I also found that the incentives I had been using with my high schoolers weren’t the same motivators for these students. 

I had to come up with a different incentive plan that met their wants and interests. 

Why are Incentives Important For Middle School?

An incentive is anything that motivates or encourages one to do something. It can be for products and services that a company needs to sell at a higher volume. Maybe they impact our health.

Incentives are extremely useful and successful at accelerating programs that need a boost. Educators would like to teach rooms full of self-motivated, eagerness to learn, ready to succeed students. 

But if you have ever stood in front of a group of 7th graders on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, you know that isn’t always the case! Sometimes you need a little something extra to get your lesson over the finish line.

Considering how many advertisements you see with “deals”, “discounts”, or “coupons” it would appear that businesses feel like incentive programs don’t just work, they are necessary for business. 

The government offers tax breaks on things they want us to buy more of. They offer cash for programs they want to see succeed like my district offering a small cash bonus for teachers to get their covid vaccine. 

It would seem that the government values incentives just as much as business. 

Educators should value incentives as well. We need to reach the unreachable. We need to stimulate the unmotivated. We need to push those who do barely enough. We need to provide a carrot for the high achievers to go above and beyond what they thought they could do. 

If you're a middle school teacher you know that motivation and morale matter a great deal. Not just for student engagement and success, but for your sanity as well! 

We need to utilize incentives with our students. Keep reading for some ideas on how to engage your middle schoolers in the learning process with incentives.

Incentives Guaranteed to Improve Behavior

1. Fidgets

Keep a class set of fidgets for students to access and play with if they meet goals. Fidget spinners, mini skateboards, stress balls, finger traps, etc.

Middle School Student Incentives

2. Drinks

Have a mini-fridge in your room? Stock it with kids' drinks like Capri-Suns or Kool-Aid Jammers. Offer those as rewards for meeting classroom expectations.

3. Stickers

We have mentioned this one before, everyone likes stickers! 

Middle School Student Incentives

4. Dress Code Exemptions

Theme days that emphasize wearing fun or silly things that are normally out of the dress code are always a fun way to incentivize students or just to break up the monotony of the school year.

5. Homework Passes

Print out passes and laminate them. Allow students to earn them for academic goals.

Middle School Student Incentives

6. Movement Breaks

Build-in movement breaks for your classes. Announce them ahead of time and with the caveat that your students meet a short-term goal to get there.

7. The Great Outdoors 

This one isn’t age-specific. We all need a little sunshine sometimes. In fact, if I finish this article before lunch I will be eating outside today. See, works for adults as well!

Middle School Student Incentives

8. Preferential Seating

This could be within your seating chart or you may provide some alternative seating options like different chairs, beanbags, or carpets.

9. Extension Choices

Allow students to choose from a variety of extension activities if they meet your daily goals. These can be cheaply created and re-used all year long.

10. Keep Score

When in doubt, I like to appeal to students' competitive instincts. No better way than to start keeping score. 

Make your big exam review into a game. Split them up into teams. Elect captains. Name a scorekeeper. Keep it fun.

Go all out. Wear a referee jersey if you got it.

Middle School Student Incentives

Keeping it Positive

Teaching middle school is certainly challenging. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun! There is no better incentive than injecting a little fun into your daily routine. 

If you utilize the ideas above or use your own, the key to any of these is keeping it positive. Be careful not to incentivize with the threat of punishment. 

Sure you can intimidate your way to short-term success, but your short-term gains will hamper your long-term progress as you will be sacrificing morale and relationships for immediate motivation. 

Have fun with it and you’ll create a “get to” mindset instead of a “have to” one. Don't teach middle school? We also have some great ideas for elementary school incentives and high school incentives as well! Need more help motivating middle school student students? Check out our guide to using student voice to create prizes for middle school students.

All Reward Ideas for Students

🎉
👑
🎁
Bonfire
Grades 9-12
Class/House
Event
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Old School Cookout
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Stairway Messages
Grades 9-12
Class/House
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Glow Party
Grades 6-12
School
Event
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Create the Seating Chart
Grades 6-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
House Induction
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Game of Thrones
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Silent Disco
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Holiday Classroom Carousel
Grades 9-12
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Fake The Funk
Grades 9-12
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Class Jobs
Grades 3-8
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Books
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Morning Meeting Leader
Grades 3-8
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Virtual Field Trip
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
School Assembly
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Movie Night
Grades 9-12
Student
Event
Low Cost/DIY

All Reward Ideas for Elementary School Students

🎉
👑
🎁
Donate $1
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Toys
Grades K-8
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Student Messenger
Grades 3-8
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Design the Bulletin Board
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Teacher Q&A
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Drop Lowest Quiz
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Trunk or Treat
Grades K-8
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Ice Cream Sundae Party
Grades K-12
Class/House
Event
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Pie a Teacher
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Sweatshirt
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Class Pet
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Snacks
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Teacher Serenade
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Class Book
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Meet the Teacher
Grades K-8
School
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Final Fridays
Grades K-8
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY

All Event Ideas for Schools

💰
🎨
Fake The Funk
💰
🎨
Art Contest
💰
🎨
Theme Party
💰
🎨
Game Week
💰
🎨
Bonfire
💰
🎨
House Induction
💰
🎨
School Dance
💰
🎨
Career Day
💰
🎨
Final Fridays
💰
🎨
The Love Soiree
💰
🎨
The A-List

All Free Reward Ideas for Schools

🎉
👑
🎁
Seating Choice
🎉
👑
🎁
Meme Party
🎉
👑
🎁
Virtual Field Trip
🎉
👑
🎁
Special Screening
🎉
👑
🎁
Class Book
🎉
👑
🎁
Partner Work
🎉
👑
🎁
Parking Spots
🎉
👑
🎁
Be a Comedian.
🎉
👑
🎁
Locker Choice
🎉
👑
🎁
Student Messenger
🎉
👑
🎁
Operate Equipment.
🎉
👑
🎁
Class Jobs

All Reward Ideas for High School Students

🎉
👑
🎁
Movie Posters
Grades 3-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Career Day
Grades 3-12
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Meme Party
Grades 6-12
School
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Blood Drive
Grades 9-12
School
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Fake The Funk
Grades 9-12
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Gift Cards
Grades 6-12
Student
Privilege
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Holiday Delivery
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Decades Party
Grades 6-12
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
House Induction
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
“Let's Make A Difference Week"
Grades 9-12
Class/House
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Classroom DJ
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Backpack
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Holiday Classroom Carousel
Grades 9-12
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Seating Choice
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
School Spirit Day
Grades K-12
School
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Design the Bulletin Board
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY

All Reward Ideas for Middle School Students

🎉
👑
🎁
Hat Pass
Grades 6-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Tech Time
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Free Dress
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Ice Cream Sundae Party
Grades K-12
Class/House
Event
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Dress Up or Down Day
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
The A-List
Grades 6-12
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Camp Read Away
Grades K-8
Class/House
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Loudspeaker Shoutout
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Water Bottle Stickers
Grades 6-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Show & Tell
Grades K-8
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Board Game Party
Grades 3-12
Class/House
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Lunch Reservations
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Graduation Celebration
Grades 6-12
School
Event
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Uber by a Principal
Grades 6-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Podcast
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Books
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY

All Student Reward & Incentive Ideas

💰
🎨
School Spirit Day
Grades K-12
School
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Pen Pouch
Grades K-8
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
💰
🎨
Silly Science Experiments
Grades K-5
Class/House
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
💰
🎨
Classroom DJ
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Snacks
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
💰
🎨
Technology
Grades 6-12
Student
Tangible
Deluxe
💰
🎨
Social Media Reporter
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Lunch With the Teacher
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Free Dress
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Extra Reading Time
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Design the Bulletin Board
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
💰
🎨
Sweatshirt
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Deluxe
💰
🎨
Extra Computer Games
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Stickers
Grades K-5
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
💰
🎨
Podcast
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Teacher Serenade
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free

All Virtual Reward Ideas for Schools

🎉
👑
🎁
Social Media Reporter
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Teacher Q&A
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Certificate of Achievement
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Stickers
Grades K-5
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Digital Escape Rooms
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Privilege
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Brain Break
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Positive Note or Call Home
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Virtual Talent Show. 🎤
Grades 3-12
Class/House
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Podcast
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Student Spotlight Board
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Classroom DJ
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Donate $1
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Host a Virtual Party. 🎶
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Extra Computer Games
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Show & Tell
Grades K-8
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Virtual Field Trip
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Free
See all Rewards

Want more ideas?

Rewards that Rock 🎸 has 100+ rewards, incentives, and event ideas to build your school culture.
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Learn more about the author, 
Jordan Pruitt
 

Teaching middle school requires a unique skill set and temperament. The most successful middle school educators are able to have high expectations while still having patience and empathy for their students.

They compose engaging lessons but are able to pivot and change their facilitation as needed to ensure success. They wear many hats as their students have many needs. 

I once had a schedule that had me split days between high school and middle school. I’m a planner. I take a curriculum map and make a copy for myself. I then break it down into units. 

Then I break the units down into months. Then the months into weeks. Then the weeks into daily lessons. Then I add hyperlinks to the daily lessons. 

So I have a very over-the-top planning calendar for my classes. I’m not alone in this. Some of you go way deeper than I do! 

My background is in high school, and my lesson planning method has served me well in that role. The reason I mention this is that when I got this assignment for middle school I did the same process for that class as I did my others. 

What I found was that I had a lot of preconceptions about pacing that needed to be adjusted for that course. This may seem obvious, but your grade level matters! 

I had lessons that took too much time. Not enough time. Lessons that didn’t engage at the level I expected. Lessons that engaged so well they created classroom management issues! 

The point I’m making here is that I learned a great deal about teaching from this group of middle schoolers. They probably taught me as much as I taught them! That is what made it so much fun! 

Aside from the mechanics of planning and teaching I also found that the incentives I had been using with my high schoolers weren’t the same motivators for these students. 

I had to come up with a different incentive plan that met their wants and interests. 

Why are Incentives Important For Middle School?

An incentive is anything that motivates or encourages one to do something. It can be for products and services that a company needs to sell at a higher volume. Maybe they impact our health.

Incentives are extremely useful and successful at accelerating programs that need a boost. Educators would like to teach rooms full of self-motivated, eagerness to learn, ready to succeed students. 

But if you have ever stood in front of a group of 7th graders on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, you know that isn’t always the case! Sometimes you need a little something extra to get your lesson over the finish line.

Considering how many advertisements you see with “deals”, “discounts”, or “coupons” it would appear that businesses feel like incentive programs don’t just work, they are necessary for business. 

The government offers tax breaks on things they want us to buy more of. They offer cash for programs they want to see succeed like my district offering a small cash bonus for teachers to get their covid vaccine. 

It would seem that the government values incentives just as much as business. 

Educators should value incentives as well. We need to reach the unreachable. We need to stimulate the unmotivated. We need to push those who do barely enough. We need to provide a carrot for the high achievers to go above and beyond what they thought they could do. 

If you're a middle school teacher you know that motivation and morale matter a great deal. Not just for student engagement and success, but for your sanity as well! 

We need to utilize incentives with our students. Keep reading for some ideas on how to engage your middle schoolers in the learning process with incentives.

Incentives Guaranteed to Improve Behavior

1. Fidgets

Keep a class set of fidgets for students to access and play with if they meet goals. Fidget spinners, mini skateboards, stress balls, finger traps, etc.

Middle School Student Incentives

2. Drinks

Have a mini-fridge in your room? Stock it with kids' drinks like Capri-Suns or Kool-Aid Jammers. Offer those as rewards for meeting classroom expectations.

3. Stickers

We have mentioned this one before, everyone likes stickers! 

Middle School Student Incentives

4. Dress Code Exemptions

Theme days that emphasize wearing fun or silly things that are normally out of the dress code are always a fun way to incentivize students or just to break up the monotony of the school year.

5. Homework Passes

Print out passes and laminate them. Allow students to earn them for academic goals.

Middle School Student Incentives

6. Movement Breaks

Build-in movement breaks for your classes. Announce them ahead of time and with the caveat that your students meet a short-term goal to get there.

7. The Great Outdoors 

This one isn’t age-specific. We all need a little sunshine sometimes. In fact, if I finish this article before lunch I will be eating outside today. See, works for adults as well!

Middle School Student Incentives

8. Preferential Seating

This could be within your seating chart or you may provide some alternative seating options like different chairs, beanbags, or carpets.

9. Extension Choices

Allow students to choose from a variety of extension activities if they meet your daily goals. These can be cheaply created and re-used all year long.

10. Keep Score

When in doubt, I like to appeal to students' competitive instincts. No better way than to start keeping score. 

Make your big exam review into a game. Split them up into teams. Elect captains. Name a scorekeeper. Keep it fun.

Go all out. Wear a referee jersey if you got it.

Middle School Student Incentives

Keeping it Positive

Teaching middle school is certainly challenging. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun! There is no better incentive than injecting a little fun into your daily routine. 

If you utilize the ideas above or use your own, the key to any of these is keeping it positive. Be careful not to incentivize with the threat of punishment. 

Sure you can intimidate your way to short-term success, but your short-term gains will hamper your long-term progress as you will be sacrificing morale and relationships for immediate motivation. 

Have fun with it and you’ll create a “get to” mindset instead of a “have to” one. Don't teach middle school? We also have some great ideas for elementary school incentives and high school incentives as well! Need more help motivating middle school student students? Check out our guide to using student voice to create prizes for middle school students.

All Reward Ideas for Students

🎉
👑
🎁
Parking Spots
Grades 9-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Wristband
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Kickback Vibes
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Final Fridays
Grades K-8
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Dance Party
Grades K-12
Student
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Trunk or Treat
Grades K-8
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Snack Pack
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Silent Disco
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Virtual Field Trip
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Special Screening
Grades K-12
School
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Pie a Teacher
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Emcee the Announcements
Grades 6-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Career Day
Grades 3-12
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Ice Cream Sundae Party
Grades K-12
Class/House
Event
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
School Assembly
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Extra Computer Games
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free

All Reward Ideas for Elementary School Students

🎉
👑
🎁
Sports Tickets
Grades 3-12
Student
Tangible
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
School Spirit Day
Grades K-12
School
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
STEM Field Day
Grades K-8
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Books
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Morning Meeting Leader
Grades 3-8
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Lunch Reservations
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Snack Pack
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Stickers
Grades K-5
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Snacks
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Firebird of the Month
Grades K-12
Student
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Show & Tell
Grades K-8
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Family Feast
Grades K-8
Class/House
Event
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Special Pen
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Read Across America
Grades K-8
School
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Trip to the Treasure Box
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Art Contest
Grades 3-12
Class/House
Event
Free

All Event Ideas for Schools

All Free Reward Ideas for Schools

🎉
👑
🎁
Teacher Serenade
🎉
👑
🎁
Show & Tell
🎉
👑
🎁
Teacher Q&A
🎉
👑
🎁
Game of Thrones
🎉
👑
🎁
Play Games
🎉
👑
🎁
Class Jobs
🎉
👑
🎁
Student Messenger
🎉
👑
🎁
Meme Party
🎉
👑
🎁
Camp Read Away
🎉
👑
🎁
Stairway Messages

All Reward Ideas for High School Students

🎉
👑
🎁
Snack Party
Grades 3-12
Class/House
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Gift Cards
Grades 6-12
Student
Privilege
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
School Assembly
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Blood Drive
Grades 9-12
School
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Movie Night
Grades 9-12
Student
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Certificate of Achievement
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Lunch Reservations
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Backpack
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Classroom DJ
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Locker Choice
Grades 9-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Host a Virtual Party. 🎶
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Music Fest
Grades 9-12
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Food-Themed Party
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Books
Grades K-12
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Positive Note or Call Home
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Bonfire
Grades 9-12
Class/House
Event
Deluxe

All Reward Ideas for Middle School Students

🎉
👑
🎁
Special Screening
Grades K-12
School
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Create the Seating Chart
Grades 6-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Emcee the Announcements
Grades 6-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Lunch Reservations
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Awards Show Afterparty
Grades 6-12
School
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Technology
Grades 6-12
Student
Tangible
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Free Dress
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Virtual Field Trip
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Old School Cookout
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Drop Lowest Quiz
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Kickback Vibes
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Teacher for the Day
Grades 6-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Video Game Rewards
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Toys
Grades K-8
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Host a Virtual Party. 🎶
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Final Fridays
Grades K-8
School
Event
Low Cost/DIY

All Student Reward & Incentive Ideas

💰
🎨
Donate $1
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
💰
🎨
Class Jobs
Grades 3-8
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Silly Science Experiments
Grades K-5
Class/House
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
💰
🎨
Drop Lowest Quiz
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Seating Choice
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Early Lunch Dismissal
Grades 9-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Tech Time
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Extra Reading Time
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Classroom DJ
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Student Spotlight Board
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
💰
🎨
Be a Comedian.
Grades 6-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Talk Time
Grades 6-8
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Parking Spots
Grades 9-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Pen Pouch
Grades K-8
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
💰
🎨
Dress Up or Down Day
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
💰
🎨
Game of Thrones
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Free

All Virtual Reward Ideas for Schools

🎉
👑
🎁
Show & Tell
Grades K-8
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Host a Virtual Party. 🎶
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Classroom DJ
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Social Media Reporter
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Certificate of Achievement
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Digital Escape Rooms
Grades 6-12
Class/House
Privilege
Deluxe
🎉
👑
🎁
Podcast
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Morning Meeting Leader
Grades 3-8
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Teacher Q&A
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Virtual Talent Show. 🎤
Grades 3-12
Class/House
Event
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Stickers
Grades K-5
Student
Tangible
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Donate $1
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Virtual Field Trip
Grades K-12
Class/House
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Extra Computer Games
Grades 3-12
Student
Privilege
Free
🎉
👑
🎁
Student Spotlight Board
Grades K-5
Student
Privilege
Low Cost/DIY
🎉
👑
🎁
Brain Break
Grades K-12
Student
Privilege
Free
See all Rewards

Want more ideas?

Rewards that Rock 🎸 has 100+ rewards, incentives, and event ideas to build your school culture.
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Learn more about the author, 
Jordan Pruitt
 

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