Modern educators know that their work is much more than just putting information into kids’ heads. A large part of the job is encouraging children to be their best, to help one another and to prepare them to join the larger society around them as active participants and positive influences. This is why celebrating student achievement at school is one of the most important ways you can use your digital signage system.
By using digital signage templates to standardize the look of recognition messages, you create a cohesive look, help the students quickly identify the type of message being displayed, and take a large amount of the work burden off of busy teaching and administrative staff.
First, think of all the kinds of recognition you can celebrate throughout the year. Every student is good at something, so think of as many different things as possible to try to get everyone involved and engaged.
Then group those message topics into larger categories. You can have academic achievements (e.g., high test scores or assignment grades, doing extra credit), athletics, participation (e.g., in a debate, science fair, spelling bee; or actively participating in class discussions), social (e.g., displaying caring behavior, volunteering), growth (improvement in a key area), having not only a Student-of-the-Month but also Student-of-the-Week and Student-of-the-Quarter/Semester/Year. These are just a few ideas – you can find more here.
Once you have several categories, create a message template for each one in your digital signage software. Make sure each has a different:
- Background (solid color or gradient)
- Font type and size (sans serif fonts work best for readability from a distance)
- Image, logo or mascot (if it makes sense)
For example, you might want to have messages that are Recognition Of Superior Effort (ROSE), so the background could be yellow with black text, or red with white text, with a picture of a rose watermarked or placed in a corner of the message template. Or maybe the school football team is the Eagles, so an athletics recognition template could have a blue background with gold text and the mascot giving a thumbs up.
Once the message template has been created, all anyone needs to do in order to recognize a student is type in their name and class, and schedule the message to a playlist. After the initial set up, teachers and administrators can celebrate students in mere moments. If your digital signage deployment is web-based, a teacher could, for example, create a recognition message using a template right there in the classroom, using a laptop or tablet, so the message appears on screens immediately.
Individual students can get these shout outs, but so can groups of students. Teachers can divide the class into small groups or teams (for example, a class of 20 could be divided into four groups of five), and they can compete against one another for recognition and achievement that goes on digital signs. Consider letting the students think up celebration categories of their own, and let them create the digital signage templates and messages. This boosts peer recognition, which is important.
And when parents drop in, they’ll also see what their children are being celebrated for at school, and can take that home to reinforce the behavior further, leading to better performance in school, which leads to more shout outs on the screens. You can also publish digital signage playlists to your school webpage, so parents can see what their children see outside the school building.
Other incentives, like prizes, extra time at lunch, and trophies can also be motivating, but nothing will get your students more actively engaged than simply seeing their names, and the names of their friends, up on screens. Using digital signage templates makes student recognition easy and fun throughout the school year.