It was an idea made for Cityline: At Hartford Public High School’s Nursing Academy, six ninth-grade teachers planned to reward students’ good behavior with a ceremony today in which they would eat cicadas.
Yes, these little creatures:
Teachers planned to eat them as a gross-out reward for freshmen who earned 600 points in the school’s new Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports program to improve discipline and school climate. (I wrote about Bulkeley High’s PBIS program in March.)
The Nursing Academy’s program was designed for the core 9th grade classes, such as English, Algebra I, physical science and geography, math teacher Adrian Panaitisor explained. Planning began in February.
Starting in mid-April, students who followed simple guidelines — “Be respectful” and “Be productive” — earned PBIS points from teachers Christian Arsenault and Lindsey Thompson, who initiated the program, and Christine Holley, Mark Favale, Leonardo Watson, Leanne Drapeau, and Elizabeth Slot, Panaitisor said. The expectations included getting students to say “please” and “thank you.”
Teachers tracked the points through May 31.
“We had 13 students earn the 600 points (and an additional 14 students with 500 points),” Panaitisor wrote in an email today. Students could essentially cash in their points in exchange for school supplies.
Or they could save them up for the highest reward: Watching the cicada-eating ceremony.
Sadly, for the spectators — but happily, for the cicadas — that plan fell through. A teacher was unable to round up the critters, Panaitisor said.
Those well-behaved students can now choose among a range of school supplies as their prize. And the cicadas get to live another day.