Positive behavior earns students 'hoots,' holiday gifts at Dundalk Middle


What if every "please" earned you a nickel and every "thank you" earned you a dime? You'd never forget your manners again, would you?

With the Positive Behavior Intervention System (PBIS) – a program that rewards students for their respectful, responsible and safe behaviors – in place, students at Dundalk Middle School always remember to demonstrate positive behaviors in order to earn "hoots." A homage to DMS's mascot, the owl, hoots are a form of currency redeemable for prizes and other goods during school events, such as Super Fun Days and dances.

In December, students exchanged hoots for holiday gifts during DMS's Winter Wonderland. Hosted annually, the two-day event allows students to browse through donations from DMS staff and local businesses and "purchase" gifts for family members. This year, gifts ranged from stuffed animals and toys to hats and lotions.


"We even had a Kindle Fire and iPod minis this year for students to purchase with their hoots," said Sharon Gibson, library media specialist at DMS.

Although touted as a celebration of the gift-giving season, DMS's Winter Wonderland reinforces the values of the school's PBIS program and shows that, sometimes, it really does pay to do the right thing. 

Story and photos submitted by Sharon Gibson, Library Media Specialist, Dundalk Middle School. Story edited by Blake Lubinski, an intern in the BCPS Office of Communications.
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