Identifying Invisible Progress: Proactively Encouraging Student Behavior Improvement

ClasStars was built for educators to help kids succeed in the classroom. We’re built on four core values: Positive Engagement, Identifying Invisible Progress, Academic Engagement, and Real-Time Attendance. In this Q&A series, we dive into each of these four facets and how each one specifically can help you – and your students.

What is invisible progress?

Invisible progress refers to students who are improving behaviorally – but in such gradual increments that it’s difficult for teachers and educators to pick up on it. Hence, it’s “invisible” to someone who doesn’t have the right tools to identify it.

For example, if a student is getting into trouble five times a day every single day, most teachers would label that student a misbehaving student. But what if that same student was getting into trouble ten times a day just a month ago? That’s progress, because they’re getting into half as much trouble as before!

Unfortunately, it’s difficult for a teacher to realize this because the progress is incremental, the student is still struggling behaviorally relative to other kids in the classroom, and yes, the classroom is a very hectic place. However, with a tool like ClasStars, it’s easy to identify invisible progress.

How can I identify invisible progress?

If you don’t have any tools at your disposal, the simplest way to do this is to grab a class roster and a pen, and start tallying each misbehavior. As you accumulate this data, you should be able to see students who are misbehaving less and less overtime.

Of course, this is nearly impossible in the modern classroom. That’s why ClasStars offers a solution that allows you to do the same thing with a simple swipe or tap on the student in question; you can even activate the full-wheel function to be more granular in recording misbehavior.

Overtime, you’ll be able to get full analysis and pattern recognition of each student’s behaviors – which will clearly identify which of your students are progressing under your radar.

Why is identifying invisible progress important?

There’s a study about motivation where participants were given a simple task to do on a piece of paper. When they gave the completed task to the researcher, the researcher acknowledged it, ignored it, or immediately shredded it. The results? To no surprise, the acknowledged participants were most motivated to do the given tasks repeatedly. But shockingly, the ignored participants were just as demotivated as those whose work was shredded in front of them to continue the experiment. In other words, ignoring someone’s progress and hard work is equally detrimental as openly destroying and disparaging it. If a student’s hard work goes unnoticed because it’s “invisible,” it’ll have the same effect as telling them that their progress isn’t worth anything. As we’ve said time and again, the heart and soul of ClasStars and our mission to empower teachers is positive engagement. So it’s important to identify invisible progress so you can engage in positive engagement with the student and encourage further progress.

What should I do once I identify invisible progress?

Give the student the praise they deserve! This kind of positive reinforcement and engagement will encourage students to continue to work hard to improve their behavior in the classroom. Acknowledgement is a simple but powerful tool for students, and the first step for acknowledging invisible progress is identifying it. Learn more about how ClasStars helps with identifying invisible progress.

ClasStars was built for educators to help kids succeed in the classroom. We’re built on four core values: Positive Engagement, Identifying Invisible Progress, Academic Engagement, and Real-Time Attendance. In this Q&A series, we dive into each of these four facets and how each one specifically can help you – and your students.

What is invisible progress?

Invisible progress refers to students who are improving behaviorally – but in such gradual increments that it’s difficult for teachers and educators to pick up on it. Hence, it’s “invisible” to someone who doesn’t have the right tools to identify it. For example, if a student is getting into trouble five times a day every single day, most teachers would label that student a misbehaving student. But what if that same student was getting into trouble ten times a day just a month ago? That’s progress, because they’re getting into half as much trouble as before! Unfortunately, it’s difficult for a teacher to realize this because the progress is incremental, the student is still struggling behaviorally relative to other kids in the classroom, and yes, the classroom is a very hectic place. However, with a tool like ClasStars, it’s easy to identify invisible progress.

How can I identify invisible progress?

If you don’t have any tools at your disposal, the simplest way to do this is to grab a class roster and a pen, and start tallying each misbehavior. As you accumulate this data, you should be able to see students who are misbehaving less and less overtime. Of course, this is nearly impossible in the modern classroom. That’s why ClasStars offers a solution that allows you to do the same thing with a simple swipe or tap on the student in question; you can even activate the full-wheel function to be more granular in recording misbehavior.

Overtime, you’ll be able to get full analysis and pattern recognition of each student’s behaviors – which will clearly identify which of your students are progressing under your radar.

Why is identifying invisible progress important?

There’s a study about motivation where participants were given a simple task to do on a piece of paper. When they gave the completed task to the researcher, the researcher acknowledged it, ignored it, or immediately shredded it. The results? To no surprise, the acknowledged participants were most motivated to do the given tasks repeatedly. But shockingly, the ignored participants were just as demotivated as those whose work was shredded in front of them to continue the experiment. In other words, ignoring someone’s progress and hard work is equally detrimental as openly destroying and disparaging it. If a student’s hard work goes unnoticed because it’s “invisible,” it’ll have the same effect as telling them that their progress isn’t worth anything. As we’ve said time and again, the heart and soul of ClasStars and our mission to empower teachers is positive engagement. So it’s important to identify invisible progress so you can engage in positive engagement with the student and encourage further progress.

What should I do once I identify invisible progress?

Give the student the praise they deserve! This kind of positive reinforcement and engagement will encourage students to continue to work hard to improve their behavior in the classroom. Acknowledgement is a simple but powerful tool for students, and the first step for acknowledging invisible progress is identifying it. Learn more about how ClasStars helps with identifying invisible progress.