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Coach blog: Kate Gummett

The Good Behaviour Game UK trial is now well underway!

We have completed the three training sessions for teachers, and the pre-implementation stage seems to have been successfully undertaken in all of my Manchester schools. One of the nicest parts of my job as a coach so far has been the welcoming atmosphere of all of the schools, and as a former primary teacher it has been so interesting to see the different ways in which the schools are set up. Each school is very different, but one thing they all have in common has been the enthusiasm with which the Game is being approached. Every single teacher seems to have grasped the potential of the Game, not just in terms of the immediate improvements of the children in their classes, but also for the longer term benefits that have been discussed during the teacher training sessions and in one-to-one conversations during coaching sessions.

In those classes that have started playing the Game, the teachers are already talking about the almost instant, positive effect that it has had on their children both while playing the Game and during normal classroom activities.

Children have been asking the play the Game, and there have been very few teams who have lost (by getting more than 4 rule breaks while playing the Game). This was an initial concern for some teachers, who worried that there would be so many rule breaks that they would struggle to keep track. Those teachers who have been monitoring the data from their probes have already noticed a decline in the number of rule breaks after only playing the Game a few times. This isn’t necessarily the case for every class. Those with children who are displaying more challenging behaviour may take longer to show signs of transferring the mastery of skills from the Game to normal classroom behaviour, but it is a very encouraging start to the trial of the Game and one which I have been happy to share with all of my schools.

The energy from teachers, from training through to first visits, has been a real boost to the coaches on the project. At our own training, the enthusiasm for the potential impact that this could have on all children was powerful, and this was something that we all wanted our teachers to see and begin to feel for themselves. For this enthusiasm to be evident at such an early stage of the trial is testimony to the excellent teachers that are involved in this project. There is a certain buzz when I am talking to my teachers, especially with regard to the early successes of the Game. We are all very much looking forward to seeing what the data is telling us about how the Game schools are comparing to the control schools but, while we wait for that, we are all happy to celebrate these successes amongst ourselves as teachers and coaches.


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