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Praise pod

Sequin | 13:45 UK time, Monday, 15 October 2007

Here's a picture of a pod - it's a "praise pod".


If you want to know more, listen to the programme between 5 and 6. If you miss it, I'll forgive you and explain, now, that the praise pod is an idea being tried out in primary schools in Rotherham. Pupils who behave well or get good marks in homework are being sent into it. Teachers say it's creating a culture of praise within the school, that's helping to reduce stress. They also predict that the praise pod will eventually help to reduce anti social behaviour....


  1. At 02:06 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Something wonky here: I can get into the blog, I can even post comments ... but I can't see the praise pod.

    Does that mean I can't praise it?


  2. At 02:06 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Gillian wrote:

    It may just be me, but I can't se the photo - there's a big box, a little red x and the words ''praise pod prototype resized copy.jpg''

    Is this another variant of the Worry Pod which was outside a hospital, and featured here a while back?

    It's going to ''reduce anti-social behaviour''....is 'praise pod' a euphemism for 'solitary confinement'?!

  3. At 02:28 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Frances O wrote:

    It's OK for me (using firefox on a mac).

    I wonder, echoing Gillian, whether this is isolating for the 'good' pupil? Sometimes the 'goodies' get picked on.

    So - is it working?

    Back in my young days we had gold stars. Us 'swots' still got bullied.

  4. At 02:41 PM on 15 Oct 2007, David wrote:

    Do pupils who show egotistical behaviour get rewarded with an I pod?

  5. At 02:51 PM on 15 Oct 2007, The Stainless Steel Cat wrote:

    "Praise Pod and pass the ammunition..."

    I can see the Pod here on this page, but not on the main page.

    It looks like a kind of big, white rugby ball (no, looks like we can't escape rugby *anywhere* just now) with a hinged oval door in the side and a seat inside it. Worryingly, it seems to have several green headlamps on the front.

  6. At 02:55 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Thank you, whoever twiddled the valves so we can see the praise pod now.

    And what a scary looking object it is! NO WAY would I want any child of mine put in that thing. (Not that I have any.)

    However, as an alternative to the ASBO for everyone-else's naughty children it offers distinct possibilities....


    PS I am not being entirely serious here.

  7. At 03:08 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    More frippery!

    When a lion meets another with a louder roar,
    the first lion thinks the last a bore.
    -- G.B. Shaw

    Mon Oct 15 15:11:11 BST 2007

  8. At 03:31 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Got to say, if I were a kid, I'd feel embarrased at having to sit in this!

  9. At 03:39 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Annasee wrote:

    I think you should forget the Glassbox after the show. Go for a Praise Pod instead. Far too much culture of blame at the BBC these days. How nice to think of young Rupert, or indeed, young Roger, settling in for a comfortable hour in the Praise Pod after they've delivered their editing best of an evening...

  10. At 04:23 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Before you let your kids go inside the device, be sure you haven't authorised automatic updates:

    “Woke up this morning to a Windows log in screen? Swear you set that option ‘Download updates but let me choose whether to install them’? We did too.

    “In what appears to be a major glitch at Microsoft, Windows users are trickling in from across the globe reporting that their machines downloaded and installed updates they did not consent to. Rubbing salt in the wound, machines were also automatically and forcefully rebooted at the default 3am time frame.”

    WHOA!! Ken and Barbie are having TOO MUCH FUN!! It must be the

  11. At 04:39 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Electric Dragon wrote:

    If it reaches 88mph, does it travel in time?

    More seriously, that looks like a computer generated image. Does the prototype actually physically exist? I looked up the website on the image - they seem to be oriented to conceptual design, market research etc rather than practical product engineering.

  12. At 04:47 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Bedd Gelert wrote:

    Anyone who thinks this is a good idea desperately needs to read "It's your time you're wasting" by 'Frank Chalk'. The total ban on giving children any feedback other than praise means there is no way of punishing poor behaviour, setting boundaries or properly correcting poor grammar.

    No doubt if this is introduced parents will be marching in to the teachers, and whingeing about how 'My Jonny has only been in the Praise Pod twice, whereas all the other kids have been in their five times'. Even if it is because their Jonny is a rude ill-disciplined lout. And the idea that you need a special 'diary room' type pod before you can praise someone. Give me strength..

  13. At 04:57 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Gillian wrote:

    Thanks for sorting the photo.
    If that thing had been at my Primary School, I'd have developed School Phobia! I hope we'll be able to hear the views of pupils who have tried it out.
    Frances O (3) I'm assured by one of my own teenagers that ''boffers'' don't get bullied at his school. Their reward is a ''Praise card''- a blue postcard sent through the post congratulating them on a particular success, and a paper certificate at the end of each term.
    That's rather cheaper than buying a Praise Pod, I'd have thought....

  14. At 04:57 PM on 15 Oct 2007, jonnie wrote:

    Mmm and wifi enabled by the looks of it.

    I'll have a listen to what's said during the programme but who ever is marketing the things is obviously doing well

  15. At 04:58 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Humph wrote:

    Hallelujah! Oh, hang on, a different kind of praise. What is wrong with green headlamps, SSCat (5)? Personnaly I would be more worried about the apparent blue laser light cutting across the seat inside. If that is how they treat the "good" pupils . . .


    SB 17:01

  16. At 06:01 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Nicola wrote:

    Yeeess it is sort of interesting but it doesn't solve the problem of praise really.

    Praise in what ever form (sticker, sweetie, praise pod etc) has to be used very cautiously, or possibly so generously it is meaningless...

    A bright child who is always good will very quickly work out (as all 3 of mine did in reception) that praise isn't fair. Little Jimmy will get a sticker/praise pod session for not hitting anyone for a whole day. My "angel" was very, very cross. Her grumble "I never hit anyone and I didn't get a sticker"...

    In fact we had to remind school that, at the end of the first term she hadn't had a "gold award" when, they all get one a term on average. She got one the next assembly- funny that...

    Fortunately they have outgrown that and, at 8, 11 and 14 are self motivated, rather than driven by external praise,though Mum and Dad do give it regualrly anyway....of course.....along with a dollop of criticism for balance!

  17. At 06:07 PM on 15 Oct 2007, adrian wrote:

    Hey, I didn't kill anyone last week so may I sit in the praise pod too, please?

    Seriously, can we not hear less about self-esteem and more about self-respect? No child I have met understands the difference.

  18. At 07:00 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Gillian wrote:

    This looks rather different to what was described on the programme - an armchair in a corner, with
    a camcorder focussed on it. Has Rotherham patented their low-tech version?

  19. At 08:12 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Bryony wrote:

    Dearie me! It sounds like some of you could do with a trip to the praise pod!!

  20. At 10:55 PM on 15 Oct 2007, Gossipmistress wrote:

    Do you think we should get one on the Beach to try out?

  21. At 12:11 PM on 16 Oct 2007, Chris Ghoti wrote:

    The words 'Praise Pod' at the top of this thread make me add 'and pass the ammunition' every time I see them. :-)

  22. At 12:46 PM on 16 Oct 2007, Vyle Hernia wrote:

    I predict that the praise pod will be superseded by a newer technology, and become covered with dust in the corner where naughty children used to be sent. Eventually it will become so dusty that it will be a breeding ground for various undesirable fauna.

  23. At 12:53 PM on 16 Oct 2007, Sid Cumberland wrote:

    Bedd Gelert (12)

    Anyone who thinks there is a 'total ban on giving children any feedback other than praise' hasn't been inside a school for a long time.


  24. At 09:03 PM on 05 Nov 2007, Louise Bates wrote:

    My child goes to one of the schools in Rotherham which has piloted the praise pod, and I personaly cannot praise it enough. It has been a positive influence on all pupils; the percieved naughty children are now realising that positive attention has more reward attached to it than negative, and the children who are always good are getting the recognition they deserve.
    The children who are sent to the pod are not singled out by their peers for being "boffs" as every child has the chance to be praised in this manner, regardless of how they have managed to attain this positive praise. The praise pod allows all kinds of achievements to be celebrated, not just academic success.
    We in this country live in a culture of critisism, not praise; receiving praise gratefully and being proud of our successes is percieved as being egotistical and unbecoming of the British. It is about time we changed this view, and where better to do this than in a primary setting, where most children learn about the accepted norms of society? I, like many other parents, would rather my child learn in an environment where good behaviour has a real pay off, such as a visit to the praise pod.
    Who among us would rather be told off for being less than others expect, than being praised for doing the best we can can do ? Kids need to feel valued just as much as adults do, and the praise pod helps teachers show that they do value the children in their care. A child who feels valued and cared for will exhibit far more good behaviour than bad behaviour.

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