The Good Behavior Game
The Good Behavior Game is an evidence-based behavioral classroom management strategy that helps children learn how to work together to create a positive learning environment. It promotes each child’s positive behavior by rewarding student teams for complying with criteria set for appropriate behavior, such as working quietly, following directions, or being polite to each other. The team-based approach uses peer encouragement to help children follow rules and learn how to be good students. It also enables teachers to build strong academic skills and positive behaviors among students.
AIR works with school districts and communities on all aspects of GBG implementation, including planning, providing training to teachers and local coaches, and monitoring practices over time.
The strategy benefits both students and teachers. Through GBG, children work together to create a positive learning environment by monitoring their own behavior as well as that of their classmates. Teachers use GBG during the school day as a learning strategy that does not compete with instructional time. In GBG classrooms there is less off-task and disruptive behavior and teachers have more time to devote to teaching.
GBG is built around four core elements that integrate classroom rules, team membership, monitoring of behavior and positive reinforcement to individuals and the group.
GBG has been proven to reduce aggressive, disruptive behavior and increase on-task behavior for students by the end of first grade, and delay the age of first-time smoking for students by middle school.
GBG has also been proven to reduce students’ use of mental health and behavioral services from 1st grade through young adulthood. For young adults, especially males who were aggressive and disruptive, playing GBG as a child can have long-term impacts on mental health, smoking, and drug and alcohol abuse.
AIR has conducted GBG implementation activities in Baltimore, MD; Colorado; Houston, TX; Washington, DC; Nebraska; and the United Kingdom.