“If a child doesn’t know how to read, we teach.
If a child doesn’t know how to swim, we teach.
If a child doesn’t know how to multiply, we teach.
If a child doesn’t know how to drive, we teach.
If a child doesn’t know how to behave, we… teach? … punish?
Why can’t we finish the last sentence as automatically as we do to the others?”
T. Herner, 1998

The Good Game, Grace Orchard (G2GO) – Building Positive Behaviours in our Students

The Story at the centre of G2GO

Mascots of G2GO

The Good Game, Grace Orchard (G2GO) started in GOS with the belief that we need to target student behaviour and discipline through teaching, just like how we will teach English and Math. To discipline is to teach, not to punish.  G2GO is based on the School-Wide Positive Behaviour Support (SWPBS) framework which aims to build positive behaviours in students and targets students’ experience in all parts of the school and at all times of the day. This involves teaching expected behaviours and encouraging these expected behaviours. Through this, we hope to increase students’ obeying of school rules, reinforce positive behaviours of students, increase goal-directedness and motivation of students, increase staff’s confidence in teaching appropriate behaviours and to reduce time spent on fire-fighting behavioural problems. 

The G2GO Positive Expectations in GOS

The first step in teaching behaviour expectations is to make the expectations clear to both our students and teachers.  The behaviour expectations are explicitly and positively stated for 10 areas in our school, and are aligned to 3 of our school values – Show Respect, Be Responsible and Have Integrity. Video modelling is also used to aid our students in understanding the positive expectations, their rationale as well as to build students’ awareness of the impact of their actions. 


In addition, posters are put up around the school in the various areas. They serve as visual reminders of the expected behaviours, as many of our students are visual learners. With these visual prompts put up around the whole school, it just made clarifying and remembering the positive expectations so much easier.

Sample of a Quest Card

The Treasury

One way that we started G2GO to help our students to be motivated to show positive behaviours was to gamify the process. The students are portrayed as GOS heroes who aim to defeat the ‘paper bag clan’ which represents the bad behaviours. Each student is equipped with a ‘G2GO quest card’, and through showing good behaviours, they earn ‘hero chops’ on their quest cards, which allows them to redeem a ‘power-up’ from the ‘G2GO treasury’! Power-ups include tangible items and non-tangible experiences such as opportunities of leadership role, special attention and privileges. Examples of non-tangible experiences which are popular with our students are the prefect experience, flag lowering as well as facial experience! There is also a ‘super power-up’ which is to earn 500 hero chops to be a member of the esteemed Principal’s Club!

Principal’s Club Badge, Membership Card and Special Vouchers

Special Privileges as a member of the Principal’s Club

In addition to receiving chops for their positive behaviours, students also receive SPF (Specific Positive Feedback) from the teachers and staff. This is another key strategy that we have found to be extremely important and effective in building and maintaining positive behaviours in our students. Using SPF has helped our students to be more aware of their behaviours and what they are reinforced for. It also aims to shift the locus of control from the teacher to the student as now the student has “earned a chop” for a specific behaviour, instead of “I give you a chop” coming from the teacher. An example of an SPF is “Good job, Daniel! You threw the rubbish into the dustbin [state the behaviour observed]. You are showing responsibility in keeping the canteen clean [state the rationale]. You have earned a hero chop [pair off with a reinforcement].”