King's Ridge is a public STEM-based middle school serving grades 5-8, and was one of the very first schools to adopt ClassEquity school-wide! After two years of COVID protocols, students and families felt disconnected, so King's Ridge is prioritizing community building "to get students to feel like school is not only a place for learning, but for fun and friendship as well." Our team got to visit King's Ridge in October, and we were blown away by their student engagement and positive school culture.
Prior to ClassEquity, King's Ridge used a "Husky Bucks" system that consisted of paper dollars. "I can say in all honesty that I was not a big fan," 8th grade history teacher Jessica G. shared. "Using this paper system, we had to make sure we had them on us at all times. We would have to put student names on them, then sign them, because a few crafty students had figured out how to make their own copies...They were cumbersome and time consuming, so I found that I used them less than I could or should have." Students weren't very engaged in the system either, added math and science teacher Liz W.
The 8th grade team had been trying to implement a classroom economy system for years, but didn't know where to start. Last year, Liz was searching for simpler solutions. "ClassEquity popped up and got great reviews from other teachers," so she brought it to her team. "Once I reviewed the website, I was sold immediately. It was exactly what I have been looking for," shared Jessica.
Walking into Jessica's class, we could feel the energy, excitement, and engagement of her students. They were in a heated round of Blooket, the winning prize ClassEquity coins of course. "Students have absolutely bought into the program," she shared. Students especially love hearing the "cha-ching" sound of earning, which Liz noted really helps students self-redirect.
Both Jessica and Liz spoke about their students' excitement to apply for jobs and have added responsibility "because they know there is value in doing them." Liz has her "Job Mob" board proudly displayed in her classroom, her 8th graders' favorites including the P.A. (Personal Assistant), Attendance Monitor, and Interior Decorator. Jessica added Cleaning Crew to the list of most sought after jobs- "who knew that students would be so excited to pass out Clorox wipes!"
After having so much success on the 8th grade team, especially with their harder to reach students, the 6th grade team caught wind and implemented the system as well. "We felt that the program was so strong and easily accessible that it would be a wonderful addition to the entire school, to which our principal agreed." King's Ridge started using ClassEquity across all four grade levels this year, and both staff and students are excited about the program- "teachers because of the ease of use, and students because of the immediacy and the ability to access their accounts and see their accounts growing."
When asked about how they structure their school economy, Liz and Jessica emphasized the customizability of the system. "We allow each grade level to structure their own economy," noted Liz. Jessica shared that as a team, they decide what jobs are needed, what rewards and fines will work for their classrooms, how much their transactions are worth, and what rewards to give. "The fifth grade has come up with an Amazon wish list for rewards that they have sent out to parents with really wonderful results, so even parents are excited about the program!"
After visiting Jessica and Liz's classrooms, Katie and I bounced around the cafeteria, chatting with students about the program. "It makes school better and more interesting" a 6th grader shared. When I asked why, expecting his response to be centered around his favorite school store items, he answered "because I have a job and more responsibility. It's fun!" We could feel the student excitement in the room about ClassEquity, one table even giving us a standing ovation when we shared we were the creators🥺.
What lit up students' eyes the most was when they talked about the real-world application. "It's like I'm my own 20-year-old person with a bank account!" one student shared. "ClassEquity is so cool. You even have to pay taxes and rent!" (Ohh how I wish this excitement continued into adulthood😂). Students spoke about how it makes them want to come to school and do better in class, one student adding, "Thank you for making this. It shows kids responsibility and self control." After speaking with students from all four grades, it became clear to us that King's Ridge vision of learning, fun, and friendship is truly playing out and making a huge impact.
If you are interested in learning more about how ClassEquity can support your school, shoot us a message! We'd love to chat.