Students learn cooperative skills and strengthen social connections with their classmates, and the Good Behavior Game improves teacher-child interaction, mental health and academic outcomes by young adulthood.
- Dr. Hanno Petras firstname.lastname@example.org
A new study from the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation (PIRE), Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Northwestern University finds that the Good Behavior Game (GBG) decreases aggressive behavior among first grade boys. GBG is a classroom management approach that rewards student teams for promoting and following classroom rules as the students monitor and manage their own behaviors.
In specific, the results of this important research show that:
- Boys who showed aggressive behavior in first grade and participated a full year of GBG were less aggressive by third grade than boys who did not receive GBG.
- First grade girls who participated in GBG were also less aggressive by third grade than girls who did not receive GBG.
- Inserting GBG into the curricula in teacher’s colleges could better support student learning and behavior.
Author, Dr. Hanno Petras notes, “Drug and alcohol use disorders, antisocial personality disorder, delinquency, incarceration for violent crimes, and suicidal ideation occur more often in people who are more aggressive early in life. The Good Behavior Game supports teachers in improving elementary school students’ classroom behavior”. Petras continued, “Students learn cooperative skills and strengthen social connections with their classmates, and the Good Behavior Game improves teacher-child interaction, mental health and academic outcomes by young adulthood.”
Baltimore City Early Learning Director Dr. Brenda Kelly said that: “The Whole-Day Good Behavior Game was well received by teachers and administrators. Staff appreciated the strong support from study facilitators. Also, the well-prepared training materials enabled teachers to implement the program with ease.”
Source: Wilcox, H. C., Petras, H., Brown, H. C., & Kellam, S. G. (2022). Testing the Impact of the Whole-Day Good Behavior Game on Aggressive Behavior: Results of a Classroom-Based Randomized Effectiveness Trial. Prevention Science, 1-15. (https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11121-022-01334-y) to be published in Prevention Science (https://www.springer.com/journal/11121)
This study was funded by a grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse grants R01DA15409; R01DA019984 and National Institute of Child Health and Human Development grant R21HD40051. The analytical work included in the publication was supported by the American Institutes for Research (AIR) as part of an internal financial assistance award to Dr. Hanno Petras. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement by AIR. For more information, please visit https://www.air.org/.
Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation (PIRE) is a national independent non-profit that conducts health research and evaluation and provides technical assistance. For almost 50 years, we have partnered with government agencies and community organizations on programs and policies to improve everyone’s health, with a goal to eliminate health disparities. www.pire.org.
PIRE’s National Capital Region (NCR) Center conducts research, evaluation, and training to advance public health knowledge and inform practices and policy decisions. Major areas of research include Injury and violence epidemiology and economic analysis, traffic safety, with special focus on alcohol- and drug-impaired driving, alcohol, marijuana, and opioid misuse and underage drinking, alcohol and other substance abuse policy research and adverse childhood experiences. https://ncr.pire.org/