Badging in the math classroom

Looking to incorporate badges into the math classroom. Since I’ consider myself a Growth Mindset leader I am plan to use badges in class to push students to try harder. I want to avoid badges aligned to content standards. My plan is to have student earn badges for three types of targets:

Specific Taregts- List specific activities I want students to pursue. The targets will be aligned to course objectives, and by completing them the students will gain something they would not have gained in class.
Random Targets—Badges for doing something completely random but still in line with the class activities. I got this idea from participating in a GooseChase activity in the summer.

Challenging or Extraordinary Targets—Some targets can be easy to accomplish, but some need to be really hard. REALLY HARD. By earning these badges, the student will know they accomplished something extraordinary, especially if they are the only one in the class who earned it. How about starting a blog on pi and getting 100 followers?

My greatest decision is which site or program to use to provide them electronically. I am considering Class Badges and Schoology Both platforms allow you to create and award badges customized for your classroom or school via a teacher account.
I’m leaning towards Schoology badges because students already use Schoology every day, so the badges fit right in with no extra effort.

Your thoughts, comments and any suggestions would be greatly appreciated


Love this idea Lonnie! I think the students will work harder if there is some type of “reward” and badges are a great idea (thanks Formative!). I have a wall for extension activities for students to work on when they complete classwork for the day and using badges as a way to reward them for completing this work would make students more likely to attempt. Thanks for the idea!


I plan to badge in my class this year as a way to motivate those students whom I deem Strugglers. I decided to award based on individual skills mastered, combinations of skills mastered, and some random (unadvertised) soft skills. I chose to use curriculum based badges to encourage students to retake tests.

I will be using a Google Spreadsheet to award my badges. There is a digital badges Add-On that is perfect for how I plan to award the badges. (I totally stole the idea from @mgarcia and adapted her non-curriculum approach to fit my needs. Her template might be easily ‘tweakable’ for your needs.) I will include a link to my template… that has the Add-on tabs for badging already included AND coded in such a way to pull the data already on my other sheets and type the ‘Y’ for me. :slight_smile: (One glitch: If you don’t delete my two Digital Badges tabs, the system will pop up an error message. This is easily fixed if you are planning on keeping/tweaking my tabs. Simply rename my two tabs by adding a letter at the end of each ‘name’ and launching the add-on. Then you can decide which sets of tabs to use for your badging. If you want the new ones you can delete mine or even leave them there for referencing formulas. If you want to use mine and tweak them, delete the new ones and then rename mine by removing the letter you added previously.)


I am not a google spreadsheet guru yet but will go check out the add-on and see if it might work better for me. Thanks again for sharing.



I totally love the concept and will try to implement this or something similar for the upcoming school year. I especially love the challenge target idea!
Question : Why do you want to avoid aligning badges to content standards?


In my opinion awarding badges for content standards is a form of standards based grading. My aim is more towards fostering growth and grit. I’m want to create a system of badges which:

  • rewards students for their engagement and participation in the course
  • helps fosters a collaborative learning environment
  • increases student interaction, student recognition, and student contribution
  • encourages student competition with one another to earn badges, through a cooperative and
    encouraging manner.

Since I teach math I am going to include badges for CCSS Standards for Mathematical Practices; which are displayed in my classroom.

Badges geared for growth include the Power of Yet badges. Student must post online something they can’t do yet -to earn the badge. Then they’ll earn a badge for achieving their Yet! Students can also earn about by responding to Richard Bravo’s blog: Positive Expectancy: the power of “yet”.


YES! Excellent.Thank you for your response. I was thinking along those lines but could not have articulated it so well. You have inspired me.


Before I created my own system I was using Flippity Badge Tracker, it is not an add-on but rather a spreadsheet that you customize and it ends up “spitting out” a webpage to display the badges. This is what the end product looked like embedded into a classroom page

With the spreadsheet skills I learned by working with it I ended up devising the one mentioned by @tricia.mintner, so if you are still on the fence perhaps a simple way to get your spreadsheet toe in the water could be to start with Flippity.


Digital Badging is a great way to recognize and celebrate not only student growth through proficiency-based tasks, but it is also an amazing way to celebrate educators in their growth as a professional. I work at a county office of ed and we launched our SCOE Badge Project 2 years ago and have seen some incredible results and how teachers use digital badging/micro-credentialing to improve their craft. Take a look at our site if you want to see what we are doing with badging in our area. SCOE Badge Project


I am new to Formative, but anxious to learn. I am curious as to how the badging worked out for you. I agree that badges are a great way to “recognize and celebrate” student growth. I hope it worked well for you.

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I used badging this past year, using @mgarcia’s experience as a starting point. I taught high school Algebra and there were mixed reviews. Traditional badging is a hands-on experience and kids can actually interact with the physical badges. That element is missing with the digital badges I used. I couldn’t see if kids were looking at their badges, and I only knew of a few students who actually approached me to talk about the badges. Because of this, I decided to make the rewards physical passes that students could see and hold… and cash in as they needed.

After this year, I’m thinking of either (1) making the reward passes digital, or (2) printing the badges on address labels to make ‘stickers’.

  • Method 1 forces students to interact with their digital badges. Since I use the Digital Badges extension in Google Sheets, I actually ‘share’ copies of images I’ve created as badges. Students would then ‘change owner’ to cash in the pass. However, the down-side is that I would have to ‘change owner’ on all those passes and that would be time consuming. So…

  • Method 2 would allow me to give positive praise in class AND students could choose to put their stickers wherever they wanted. BRAINSTORM: I think I could create a Passport (Mathport?) where students place their accumulated badge stickers… and earn certain classroom privileges/rewards as they fill their passport. I.E. they could earn small candies, work up to bringing a drink in class, etc. :eyes: If I use the badge as a full sized address label, I wouldn’t have to cut anything… AND they would take up say ‘three’ boxes out of X on a passport page (each page being a special privilege). The other single boxes could be filled with small stickers/stamps/teacher’s initials that are randomly passed out for helping another student, volunteering to work a problem, reaching a certain goal, winning an in-class game, etc!! Thank you so much for posting on this page… you’ve helped me amp up my badging system for next year with an idea to increase engagement as well! :heart_eyes:

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    I convinced our 8th grade team to use digital badges using [Schoology]( this past year.   It started off slowly, which was due to inconsistant messaging by us & types of badges we were awarding, yet ended extremely well after we focused on rewarding badges to improve school cluture. Badges celebrated  mindset skills, positve messaging and acts of kindesss in the classrooms and school. By the last term students were discussing their badges and telling others what they did to earn them.

We have an end of the quarter “Pride” afternoon where student particpate in an activity or activies for 90 minutes if they earned at least 5 badges per term. The program was such a success there’s talk about creating a Gold, silver and bronze levels for the # of badges earned. Please note, in my math oriented opinion, using badges to to promote positive positve school culture will result in students performing better instead of using badges to motivate students to perform better.

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I have no idea why the above post is formated the way it is.

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