Introducing Classcraft’s fifth Quest of the Month! Each month at Classcraft, we’ll be choosing one awesome quest to promote. Our pick for the month of August is Tammy Leahy, the creator of the quest “The Caverns of the Ogre King,” a lesson plan for her middle school essay writing module. You can import her quest here.
If you use Classcraft, you can submit quests you’ve created to be the next Quest of the Month on our submission page. Quests are personalized, self-paced, choose-your-own-adventure lessons for students. Our goal is to spotlight the amazing educators who inspire us and share creative, teacher-made content with our global community of forward-thinking educators.
Take it away, Tammy!
What grades and subjects do you teach?
Tammy Leahy: Grades 6-8 English Language Arts
How long have you been teaching?
Leahy: 11+ years
Where do you teach?
Leahy: Windham Middle School, Willimantic, CT
What made you decide to use Classcraft?
Leahy: Some educator friends had mentioned how well it worked with their kids and, knowing I had some students who would do better with constant incentives, I decided to give it a shot. My younger kids loved having something to fight for in classes, and it really helped them to start working cooperatively. My older kids loved the competition of it, and even the most difficult behavioral issues found that the incentives were just as valued by them as by the best-behaved kids.
What kinds of things are you passionate about?
Leahy: I love reaching those “difficult” kids. I always find that many people give up on kids because perhaps they behave differently or aren’t what they expected. I love the challenge of getting through to those kids and making them into better people than they thought they could be.
Why do you love the quest you created? What makes it special?
Leahy: I love it because it really makes kids who love structure see that they can succeed, whether they are used to it or not. I had a student who barely did any work all year constantly be ahead of his classmates. The early due dates and extra incentives to get things done on time made it so that my students did better with time management than they did all year. I could also check their work constantly and make sure they did it right before allowing them to move on. It also allowed me to give my advanced students the next part of the assignment without having to wait for their classmates, which was a huge relief for them.
What did your students think of your quest? How did they react?
Leahy: Most really liked it. They liked the structure and the progress of it. It took a while for them to realize that the goal was a full essay (no matter how many times we discussed it … ahh the bane of middle school), but once they realized the goal, they really excelled and talked about it like it was a real project and not just individual assignments. A few complained that it was too much work, but it is middle school. That’s normal.
What’s one of your favorite things about Classcraft?
Leahy: I love that it is fully customizable and that students can access it from anywhere. It keeps them invested, not only in my classroom but during transitions as well. They often use it as a way to contact me frequently with questions about an assignment or school events. It keeps me very clued into them.