English 9 Regents: Let’s Play the Family Feud! (Romeo and Juliet)

In an effort to encourage students who, throughout the first half of the year, have not diligently kept up with homework and have subsequently failed myriad quizzes, I introduce the Family Feud in the third quarter.  The idea is to use positive peer pressure to get all students to complete all assignments and to study for (and do well on) all tests/quizzes.  I took the idea from the House Cup Challenge in the Harry Potter series (“Ten points to Gryffindor!”), and it has worked well for the past twelve years that I have been doing it with my freshmen.  Granted, it requires a lot of additional time and effort from me to keep track of all the points, but when I begin to see kids who have come in empty-handed all year suddenly say to me, “Hey, Ms Woodward, I have ALL my homework done!”, then the time is worth it.  Grades have traditionally gone up every third quarter ever since I started doing this game.   Accountability becomes a huge factor in this game!

Well… there WAS this one group, however, when we called this game Survivor, and we were reading Lord of the Flies that decided to see just how low their score could go… and they managed to earn more than 3000 points…in the negative.  But that was a long time ago, and it hasn’t been repeated since.

And, of course, there is a much coveted prize… a free 100% on an in-class essay at the end of the unit.  While there are those who may say that it’s “not fair” to allow a free 100 on an essay, just think of it this way: the winners have already done well enough with homework and quiz grades to come out on top of the other five groups, so it stands to reason that those students would most likely do well on the essay anyway.  Most likely, those students would have probably gotten over 85% if they had to write it; that actually makes their prize worth 15 bonus points and a free period in the library.  Kids really, REALLY do get very involved with this game (it will last, this year, for eight weeks).


In order for one family to win the Family Feud, students in each family must work together.  Remember that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Don’t be your family’s weakest link!  There are six families with three sets of opponents (the Montagues vs. the Capulets, the Jets vs. the Sharks, and the Brainiacs vs. the Jocks).  While ALL families are involved in the competition, each individual family will be competing against one other family in particular… one’s loss of points is the opponent’s gain.  Also, remember that these are NOT grade points, just game points.   Each individual earns his/her grade just as always.

Earning Points:

All members of the group are on time   (20 pts)

All members of the group are prepared each day   (20 pts)

All members of the group have the homework complete  (20 pts)

All members of the group score 100% on quiz  (100 pts)


All members of the group score 85% or higher on quiz  (50 pts)

All members of the group score 75% or higher on quiz  (25 pts)

All members of the group at least pass the quiz (65%)   (15 pts)

All members of the group are participating (per day)  (10 pts)

Members raise their hands and wait to be called on   (5 pts)

Losing Points:

Every member who is without homework 100% completed  (- 20 pts)

Every tardy member ( – 20 pts)

Every unprepared member (no book, packet, pen or paper)  ( – 20 pts)

Every member of the group who fails a quiz   (- 50 pts)

Every non-participating member in the group  (- 25 pts)

Each instance of shouting out of turn  (- 5 pts)

Each referral written for a group member (- 100 pts)

Each instance of chewing gum or wearing a hat  (- 10 pts)


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Filed under Domain 1: Planning and Preparation, Domain 2: Classroom Environment, English 9 Regents

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