- Why operate a Reward System?
- How do students get Cookies?
- Are they limitless?
- How many Cookies are to be given out?
- How are they distributed?
- What are the denominations?
- How can students use them?
- Is there a maximum amount they can play during Casino Night?
- What if nearly everyone loses everything early in the evening?
- Will 3 and 4 week students have an advantage?
- How do we get the Cookies back?
- House Points Procedure
- House Point Guidelines
All summer schools operate two reward schemes:
An individual incentive, using money-like vouchers to be given out throughout the entire course and used on the Casino & Auction Night
A group incentive, similar to the one used in the Harry Potter books, using points awarded by staff to a student to be totalled with the rest of their accommodation house mates
Why operate a Reward System?
The main objectives of a reward system are to incentivise participation, reward good behaviour and to promote an inclusive community amongst the student body.
A formalised and standardised reward scheme will directly benefit the students, centre and staff in the following ways:
- increased motivation and interest
- increased student integration and socialisation
- team building and a greater spirit of camaraderie
- peer pressure to encourage co-operation
- source of healthy competition
- better behaviour
- demonstrates structure and organisation
- additional way of ensuring good student experience
- increased ‘control’ of students
- relates activities better by giving them a tangible aim
Cookies are the voucher system of LAL Summer Schools and can be used at Casino & Auction Night, one of the last nights of each two-week course. They should be used as a great incentive in class and it is important to note that they have no monetary value and cannot be exchanged for money or goods.
How do students get Cookies?
There are several ways that students can earn Cookies:
- Teachers can give them as prizes for class competitions
- House Parents can give them as prizes for keeping rooms tidy etc.
- Activity Leaders can give them as prizes for sports or other activities
- Students will also be given an allowance of Cookies at the Casino & Auction Night
Are they limitless?
No. There is a limit of 35 per day given to each staff member and they should use these guidelines for awarding them to make sure that there is consistency in the awarding of Cookies.
Staff should NOT take it upon themselves to copy/create more/counterfeit the vouchers. This will cause problems on the actual night they are used, if fake vouchers are found.
How many Cookies are to be given out?
There are only a certain amount of Cookies in the bank, so there has to be a limit on distribution otherwise we will suffer the same rate of Cookie inflation as Zimbabwe!
Each Teacher can have a maximum of 35 per day (for a maximum of 10 days), i.e. one 5, one 10 and one 20 note to give to a student who has done something, won something or otherwise deserves an incentive in class. The Academic team also needs to ensure they have standardised the awarding of Cookies to ensure fairness – something teenagers feel very strongly about!
Activity Leaders and House Parents can give them out if they feel it would be useful or right to reward someone.
Cookies should be explained in class with the Teacher saying exactly how the system works.
On the Casino & Auction Night, each student will receive an allowance of 100 Cookies. Those who have been awarded Cookies have these as extra. This should be noted down on a register so that students do not get more than their allowance.
How are they distributed?
The manager of each department will be given instructions as to how many Cookies can be given to each staff member.
What are the denominations?
Like UK currency, they are in 5, 10, 20 and 50 denominations. 50s should only be given out where it is not possible to give out smaller denominations. The 50s are red so you can easily see the difference.
How can students use them?
Towards the end of each two-week course, there will be a Casino & Auction Night. The Casino will consist of roulette, blackjack, Texas Holdem, High/Low and any other games which the students can play. There will also be an auction at the end where the students can bid for the various prizes on offer.
Students who are still in possession of Cookies after the Casino & Auction Night will also be able to use them at the end-of-course disco to exchange for other items, e.g. luminous bracelets, dedications, snacks and merchandise. Staff exchanging these for Cookies must strictly adhere to the LAL exchange rate.
Is there a maximum amount they can play during Casino Night?
Yes. To prevent someone winning more Cookies than we can provide, a maximum ‘bet’ of 20 Cookies is imposed on most games. In some games this means that only 20 Cookies can be won. But some games, like Roulette where there are odds large amounts could be won.
What if nearly everyone loses everything early in the evening?
An announcement should be made that a further allowance of Cookies is available to everyone. Depending on the time that this happens, a decision on this allowance should be made up to a maximum of 100 Cookies per student.
Will 3 and 4 week students have an advantage?
No, because there are different notes valid for different two-week sessions. They are distinguishable by the written number on the note. The notes to be used in the first and third two-week sessions have a black number and the other ones have a white number.
It must be explained to all students that the wrong notes cannot be accepted and that all Cookies from the previous session should be handed in.
How do we get the Cookies back?
Some Cookie notes will be kept as souvenirs or maybe even held back to try and cheat the system (3 and 4 week students trading with other 3 and 4 week students)
On the last night, some prizes may be exchanged for Cookies. This could be some of the smaller items such as chocolates, badges etc. It is important to put a limit on the number of these items and also to make the price quite high. There may be a lot of Cookies in circulation.
All staff should encourage the return of Cookies and place a box near the office and in accommodation houses with a sign on it.
House Points Procedure
All students are assigned to a specific accommodation house for the duration of their stay. This information can be found on their Student ID Card or the Master List, if necessary. Students can earn House Points during activities and for good behavior etc. for the accommodation house they are assigned to. House Points are recorded in the Office and an update is given during specific assemblies. In order to award or deduct House Points, a staff member should inform the Office where regular scores should be kept to be regularly announced at assembly.
House Point Guidelines
- all staff members are allowed to award House Points
- IGLs are NOT allowed to give House Points or to suggest them
- the minimum number of House Points at any one time to any one student that can be awarded is 5 and the maximum is 25
- House Parents are not allowed to award House Points to students in their house
- House Points can be deducted for bad behaviour (late for assembly etc.)
- House Points can be awarded if a student/group of students wins a competition
- House Points can be awarded for good behaviour or taking part in an activity
- current House Point scores should regularly be announced at assembly
- students who have had House Points deducted should be named and shamed at assembly
As accommodation houses have different student capacities, the scores should reflect this. There is a spreadsheet which allows you to input the House Point awarded and adjusts them automatically according to the number of students in the accommodation house.
It is vitally important that you are consistent with your awarding of House Points as teenagers are very competitive and they have very good intuition regarding unfairness.
There should be a white board in the assembly hall with the totals and this should be updated every evening assembly.
Towards the end of each two-week period, announce the night that the winning house will be decided (ideally two nights prior) to give the students a last chance to boost their score.
The winning house will receive a party thrown just for them, however other smaller prizes could be introduced at random throughout the weeks to keep the enthusiasm up.