I got this idea several years ago while I was substitute teaching, and it never fails. It has to do with clean-up at the end of the day. I've tried having clean-up jobs but the jobs never seemed to get done to my satisfaction.
Here's what I do:
I choose three spots in the room that need cleaning without telling the kids which three spots I have chosen.
I then say "go" and the kids clean everything hoping to hit the spot tht I have secretly chosen.
I don't say "stop" until I am satisfied the room is clean, even if they have already gotten the three spots I had chosen.
Then I reveal the three spots and present the winners with a jolly rancher or other small reward.
Although the kids who didn't win are disappointed they cleaned the wrong spot, that doesn't stop them from trying even harder next time. The biggest winner is of course the teacher who has a clean room with minimal effort and expense.
Another Clean-Up Idea?
Read Classroom Clean Up in the book, Tools & Toys.