Cryptocurrency As A Form Of Reward In The Classroom

Published by alvinauh on

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The idea of handing out rewards sounds like a great idea to encourage certain positive behavior in the classroom. There are many ways around this, ranging from simple sweets all the way to literally handing out money to students. The thing is, I’m not paid enough to do something like this. I don’t mean this in an exasperated manner, but it is more from a practical point of view. That is when I came across this video:

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The video introduced on how to construct any coin or cryptocurrency within 5 minutes using the waves platform. The waves platform allows for the issuing, creation and storing of your very own token. I aim to create my own coin to distribute to the students of my class. Who knows? It may be as valuable as Dogecoin one day. There are a few advantages in building my own cryptocurrency for the classroom.

Builds An In-Class Economy

Candy and other gifts for reward in the classroom only travels one way. It travels from the teacher’s pocket into the students’ and stays there. However, having a token that can be exchanged for something has its benefits. For one, it encourages collaboration among the students.

Every student is different, with each having a unique set of skills. Imagine if the students are asked to share their knowledge with each other, helping each other with each other’s homework. In exchange for receiving help from each other, they will pay their peers a certain fee in the form of that cryptocurrency. In addition, they could work with each other to create content to sell to their peers. This can be in the form of notes or videos. These content can be paid for in this coin as well.

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Of course, one may argue that having students collaborate among each other is supposed to be done willingly. That, or you can ask the students to collaborate with each other. While that can be controlled within the confines of the classroom, how about outside of the classroom? Imagine if you can reward the students for studying at home. For example, the students can create notes from studying extra at home. They can then later sell this to their peers for tokens. The beauty of this is that it allows for them to study and create content based on their own learning without being forced to do so.

Teaches The Students On Life Skills

Having my very own classroom token in the form of a cryptocurrency has a few advantages. First, its completely online. A scoreboard pasted in front of the classroom is great, but it may not stand the test of time or certain natural disasters. Furthermore, unless the students have some really mean hacking or phishing skills, it is unlikely that they get to manipulate the tokens in each other’s wallet.

The second advantage is that it teaches the students important life skills. As far as I know, no syllabus has covered the concept of cryptocurrency in school. Implementing a self-made token in the class can not only expose the students to the concept of cryptocurrency, but the concept of money and cryptography.  This also prepares the students for the real world, especially a world where cryptocurrency and blockchain will play an increasingly important role.

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Expanded Use For Other Teachers

The use of a token created can also be used in other schools or other teachers, if they are willing of course. The thing is, there are a few issues, namely in terms of the value of the token. It is quite impractical to get students working hard for a token that has no value. As such, the teacher can allow for this token to be exchanged for some gifts or privileges.

If more teachers or even the administrator gets involved, the gifts can be bigger,  ranging perhaps from gift vouchers to other prizes. This could even become something akin to a district wide competition or assessment. It is even possible to grade students based on how many tokens they have, with the students with the most tokens getting a higher grade than others.

The other issue is wallet storage. Hopefully not one of them would lose their password. That being said, I believe this is all part and parcel of learning about cryptocurrency and responsibility in general.

This is definitely one of the projects that I hope to implement in class. I believe that books on teaching one day may include building your own token and implementing it in the classroom. I am excited for this, but of course, if you have done it before, I would love to hear your thoughts on it.