Lesson 1: What does a token economy look like in theory?

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Lesson 1: What does a token economy look like in theory?

Introduction: The token economy is a classroom management system that reinforces positive behaviors in the classroom through a system of "tokens" that are given to students who exercise those behaviors. The "tokens" are then exchanged for a desired item of choice by the student. In this lesson, you will read the two articles that discuss the theory and history behind the token economy and reflect on your reading in a learning journal. You will be prompted to answer specific questions along the way.


Objectives: By the end of this lesson participants will be able to...

1. Identify the uses of the token economy in the classroom
2. Analyze the purpose of the token economy through written response questions after reading two theory articles
3. Identify three criticisms of the token economy in the classroom and reflect on those ideas
4. Evaluate one way to use the token economy to meet the needs of a twenty-first century classroom

Question Before You Read: Think about your own experience as a classroom teacher. What student behaviors would you like to see improve?


Assignment: Click on the external links below to read two articles that discuss the theory behind the token economy and in your learning journal, answer the questions connected with each article

Article 1:
File:Doll Token Economy.pdf

1. How do you believe you can use the token economy in your classroom?
2. Identify three criticisms of the economy that are mentioned in the article. What are your thoughts on these criticisms as they relate to your individual school, classroom, etc. Can you think of any other issues or problems you may encounter?

Article 2:
File:Token Economy.pdf

1. You have now looked at four different ideas for the token economy in a school. Do you see yourself working individually or collaboratively? Why?
2. Do you hope to use a computer generated system such as Class Dojo? What would be some of the advantages and disadvantages with implementing a technology based token system?

Learning Journal: In your learning journal write responses to the five questions asked in the lesson and the assignment. Also, think about how you may plan to implement this system in your own class. In the next lesson we will look teachers who use these systems in their classrooms everyday so that you will get further ideas on implementation.

Doll, et. al. (2013). The Token Economy: A Recent Review and Evaluation. International Journal of Basic and Applied Science, Vol. 02, No. 01, July 2013, pp. 131-149.

Once you are done move on to the next lesson: Lesson 2: What does a token economy look like in practice?