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G.R.E.A.T. Elementary School Component

Elementary School Group

Introduction

The G.R.E.A.T. Elementary School Component consists of a competency-based life skills curriculum designed as a precursor to the middle school curriculum. This component establishes the foundation that prepares children for the intensified content and cooperation exercises taught in the middle school curriculum, while developing a positive bond between law enforcement and youth. Reaching children at an earlier stage of development allows for a better transition into the middle school curriculum. Children who have aggressive behavior in the elementary school years are more likely to display antisocial and violent behavior as adolescents and young adults. By providing prevention programs to students in elementary and middle school, it is believed that such programs have a better chance of affecting the developmental course of the problem behavior.

Goal

To prevent youth violence while developing positive relationships between criminal justice professionals and youth during their early developmental years

Program Structure

  • The curriculum is designed for fourth- and fifth-grade students as a precursor to the G.R.E.A.T. middle school curriculum, has integrated the National English Language Arts Standards and National Health Education Standards, and is based on effective research practices.
  • Sworn/certified criminal justice professionals must first be certified to teach the G.R.E.A.T. Program.
  • The curriculum can be used in conjunction with and to reinforce other prevention programs to encourage positive relationships among the community, parents, schools, and law enforcement.

The Lessons

The curriculum consists of six 30- to 45-minute lessons designed to be taught in sequence. Each lesson is accompanied by a family letter that the student takes home explaining the lesson and encouraging parent/student interaction.

One special feature of the curriculum is the activity about bullying behaviors. This activity uses a pervasive and realistic problem to prompt student discussion and the development of positive solutions. The goal is to help students practice developing positive solutions and appropriate decision making when faced with tough decisions.

The curriculum consists of the following lessons:

  1. G.R.E.A.T. Beginnings
    • Lesson Goal: Students will identify facts about the G.R.E.A.T. Program and various aspects about violence and prevention.
  2. To Do or Not to Do
    • Lesson Goal: Students will demonstrate decision-making skills and identify to whom they can talk if they need help making decisions.
  3. Loud and Clear
    • Lesson Goal: Students will demonstrate effective communication skills.
  4. Staying Cool When the Heat Is On
    • Lesson Goal: Students will practice controlling anger and develop strategies to manage their anger.
  5. We're All in This Together
    • Lesson Goal: Students will identify individual and group differences and discuss respecting others.
  6. G.R.E.A.T. Days Ahead
    • Lesson Goal: Students will identify ways of being a G.R.E.A.T. citizen.
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