Students who misbehave are a benefit to their team, which encourages poor behavior. Can this possibly be right?

I have only been using this for a few weeks with my students, so I may just be confused.  Today, one of my predictably well-behaved teams complained that other teams with members who do negative things will ultimately have more opportunities to earn xp.  If you're a good kid, who behaves well, you'll get xp for your good behavior.  But if you're lucky, one of your teammates will do something to lose hp, and then you have an extra opportunity to earn xp by saving them.  This means that teams who self-regulate and get it right every day will not earn that extra xp like the teams who do not self-regulate as well will have.

I am buried in this one.  Anyone know if that's right, and if so, how can I reconcile this for them?

From a certain perspective, yes, those other teams will zoom up in XP from more power-use opportunities.

Find something to reward your better teams. (Do you put tests in for XP? That type of thing) Or maybe a reward each day/week for the best behaved team?

To help keep my kids moving forward, I always used the "Being positive in class" 100 XP button daily. But if I were in your situation and the students were trying me, I wouldn't offer that to those other teams.


There are a couple ways to handle this from my experience.

1) Be sure to do plenty of boss battles and events where students get HP loss. This will satisfy the Warriors wanting to protect and the healers wanting to heal. I usually did one boss battle a week, maybe two. Sometimes review; sometimes just fun things like random trivia, to be honest. 

2) If a student is purposefully acting out, don't punish them in Classcraft for it. That's what they're hoping will happen. At this point, as much as it is trying to be avoided, they're doing it to act out and it might deserve a write-up, detention, sentences, whatever your discipline system pertains. This may seem harsh to some, but to me, if you are doing things that are not in the spirit of the game, then you get real consequences for it.


Final anectodatal comment: If the students' HP are all full, probably time for another boss battle. If they're sitting at full HP, full AP, they're probably going to get bored and start pushing to act out. ESPECIALLY if AP are high. Give them a reason to constantly use those abiltiies and keep their AP low. If a warrior doesn't have many AP, they can't protect. Healers with no AP can't heal and Mages with no AP can't replenish AP. Eventually, at that point, they would have to deal with the consequences of their actions.

It's definitely a balancing act, and you'll see how it works for your class of children. Every group of kids are different and sometimes, you end up with groups where certain kids think the way to get ahead is to misbehave. Just have to teach them they're wrong. :)

I haven't had this particular issue come up where a kid came right out and said it, but I am sure that some have thought it.

Sometimes I put a "Binding spell" on a particular group and they aren't allowed to use their powers to help each other (or for any reason at all if I am extra annoyed). This means that they can't protect/heal to game the system.

I also have a couple other ways for students to earn XP. Every assignment in my class is attached to an XP reward. I only award XP if the assignment is turned in on time. This means that kids who are behaving themselves and getting work done on time are getting rewarded and those off task troublemakers aren't. I also have an extra XP bounty board that is full of "extra credit" type assignments that kids can do for extra XP (I don't offer extra credit in my class). Each weekend on Friday I send out a "double jeopardy" message. For that weekend (until Midnight Sunday) students can get double XP for whatever bounty I chose that weekend. I tend to pick the more academic options for these double jeopardy ones. 

These have been able to keep my class relatively balanced. 

I hope these help. I also am totally stealing the idea of random trivia boss battles each week. Maybe I can send out an article to read outside of class and make the questions from the article...hmmmmmm....Thanks Nicholas!

Here is my Extra XP Bounty Board if you are interested.

I was going to say, offer up a reward if no one on their team loses HP, can be per day, per week. Although, if it is intentional, I agree with other measures being taken. I do, however LOVE the binding spell idea! I think I’ll have to use that one!

I just had this EXACT issue. Some students will beg to take damage or ask what would cause it because they want to use their powers. 

Just today I added a new rule that any student found misusing (spamming) the discussion tab in quests would take damage. 

I saw two of my best behave students, a mage and warrior, conspiring. There was silence then my Class Craft started blowing up with alerts as the mage started spamming "Hi Sir" dozens of times. 

I told him to spot and that he'd be taking damage and he was grinning and replied with "It's okay, our warrior is going to use protect." the warrior then  piped in with "Then he can spam more and I can protect and when I run out of AP he's going to Mana surge me to give me back AP and we'll keep going." I had to give it to them, I let them have the XP for using their powers and a little extra for creative thinking. I was impressed. 

There's been a few instances of these well behave kids working together like that to grind XP. We had a "floor is lava" event and they all dived on the floor so they could use their powers!

I really like Arcadia's idea of a 'Binding Spell'. I had a similar tactic for another student who was purposefully acting out (not harmlessly like the above ones) because it clicked to him that misbehaving lead to more XP so I 'entombed' him and told him that he was cut off from the game world so that all game effects wouldn't touch him, real world consequences were still present however. 

If my students ask me to take off HP so they can use a power, I always say, "How about I take off all your HP instead?"  And if I feel like they are abusing the system, I either don't allow protect, or take off more damage than they can protect.  Whatever is needed to stop abuse.  Always remember you are the gamemaster, and your word is law.   

I found this to be troubling, but not impossible. The classes who were very well behaved didn't seem to take to the game as much as the others did, and that's okay.I do not allow the warriors to use defend for all offenses. Warriors may defend against random events, and restroom trips. I also don't take health points away more than once per day for the same reason. After the first one, they get a different consequence. 

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