As every school year begins, parents are invited to come to the school to meet their children’s teachers. For those who don’t have children or don’t have school age children, teachers spend a lot of time teaching them how to behave in the classroom so they can actually learn something. My daughter’s teacher explained that she uses a system called “The Rose Hill Rockets 3 Rs” which was created by Rose Hill Elementary School in Virginia. The 3 Rs being: Respect, Responsibility, and Ready. At the end of the day, each child receives a color nomination from their teachers based on her/his behavior: Orange for excellent, Green for good, and Red for, well, not so good. Children draw the colored dots designated for them in their daily planners for parents to view and sign at home. She says this system is phenomenal, and I quote her “it works, it really works”.
I agree with her that this system works. The first thing my daughter tells me when I get home from work every day is the color she received that day from her teacher. She anticipates an immediate reaction from me, some type of positive reinforcement (a kiss and a hug) noticing how hard she worked that day.
So, where am I going with this you may ask? My “A-ha” moment came while at the classroom listening to the teacher explaining the system and how can we apply such a simple behavioral reinforcement methodology among adults. When I use Google to find “encouraging positive behavior “or “positive reinforcement”, most of the search findings are related to children. But wait a second, we adults need that too!! Why and how can we as parents, husbands, wives, friends, siblings, and co-workers, encourage or provide positive reinforcement to our children, wife, husband, friend(s), siblings, co-workers, when they do good, either for themselves or for others? We all need a little encouragement.
With the availability of information via the internet at our fingertips and exceptional social marketing campaigns, we are able to access an unbelievable amount of information. Yet, a lot of people out there still struggle with bad behaviors such as eating unhealthy food, smoking, having unprotected sex, not going to the doctor for regular check-ups, not getting their children vaccinated for the flu, etc. So what is missing? I think, in my opinion, what could be missing is the message we need to include in each of these campaigns for those “real influencers”, the parents, husbands, wives, friends, siblings, and co-workers who can cheer, encourage and motivate those who need a little more inspiration to make and sustain the positive change.