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The Behavior Code: A Practical Guide to Understanding and Teaching the Most Challenging Students 1st Edition

37 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1612501369
ISBN-10: 1612501362
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The Behavior Code: A Practical Guide to Understanding and Teaching the Most Challenging Students + The Behavior Code Companion: Strategies, Tools, and Interventions for Supporting Students with Anxiety-Related and Oppositional Behaviors + How to Reach and Teach Children with Challenging Behavior (K-8): Practical, Ready-to-Use Interventions That Work
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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Teaching is an art, but it’s one that can be improved with science. Based on what we have learned in the field of psychology, The Behavior Code gives teachers the tools to transform the behavior patterns of some of their most challenging students. By using this essential book, teachers—instead of punishing or writing "off troubled students—can get them onto a path for success.” — Geoffrey Canada, president and ceo, Harlem Children’s Zone


“The Behavior Code is truly a godsend. Concisely written and easy to read, this book offers a framework for creating successful behavioral plans. I predict that once teachers and principals begin to apply the authors’ approach for understanding and changing problematic behavior, they’ll never look elsewhere for help again. Buy it, read it, use it, read it again and again—and pass it on!” — William S. Pollack, associate clinical professor, Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School


“This book is an essential guide for teachers and school personnel who find themselves in daily contact with students presenting with difficult behaviors. The authors outline an intervention procedure that is easily implemented in a busy classroom with multiple demands. Too often, behavioral intervention plans require so much attention to detail that teachers soon decide to disengage. Not so with the FAIR plan. By providing clear instructions and helpful examples, the authors promote a plan that prevents inappropriate behaviors while reinforcing socially acceptable alternatives.” — LeAdelle Phelps, professor of counseling/school psychology, University at Buffalo, SUNY

From the Back Cover

Based on a collaboration dating back nearly a decade, the authors of The Behavior Code—a behavioral analyst and a child psychiatrist—reveal their systematic approach for deciphering causes and patterns of difficult student behaviors and matching them with proven strategies that get students back on track academically. This book includes user-friendly worksheets and other helpful resources for applying the authors’ approach.

“Teaching is an art, but it’s one that can be improved with science. Based on what we have learned in the field of psychology, The Behavior Code gives teachers the tools to transform the behavior patterns of some of their most challenging students. By using this essential book, teachers—instead of punishing or writing "off troubled students—can get them onto a path for success.” — Geoffrey Canada, president and ceo, Harlem Children’s Zone

“The Behavior Code is truly a godsend. Concisely written and easy to read, this book offers a framework for creating successful behavioral plans. I predict that once teachers and principals begin to apply the authors’ approach for understanding and changing problematic behavior, they’ll never look elsewhere for help again. Buy it, read it, use it, read it again and again—and pass it on!” — William S. Pollack, associate clinical professor, Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

“This book is an essential guide for teachers and school personnel who find themselves in daily contact with students presenting with difficult behaviors. The authors outline an intervention procedure that is easily implemented in a busy classroom with multiple demands. Too often, behavioral intervention plans require so much attention to detail that teachers soon decide to disengage. Not so with the FAIR plan. By providing clear instructions and helpful examples, the authors promote a plan that prevents inappropriate behaviors while reinforcing socially acceptable alternatives.” — LeAdelle Phelps, professor of counseling/school psychology, University at Buffalo, SUNY

Jessica Minahan is a board-certified behavior analyst and special educator who is currently employed in the Newton (Mass.) public school system as a district-wide behavior analyst. Nancy Rappaport is an assistant professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and author of In Her Wake: A Child Psychiatrist Explores the Mystery of Her Mother’s Suicide (Basic Books, 2009).
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard Education Press; 1 edition (April 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1612501362
  • ISBN-13: 978-1612501369
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 7.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,988 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By txmama on February 4, 2013
Format: Paperback
The Behavior Code, by Jessica Minahan and Nancy Rappaport, is built on the idea that "behavior is communication" (p. 15) and that kids' actions represent their efforts to solve problems. Minahan and Rappaport specify that behavior can serve one or more of four functions: gaining attention, escaping something undesirable, gaining something desirable, and obtaining sensory satisfaction. Teachers need to look at kids' behaviors and figure out what they communicate in order to respond effectively. Minahan and Rappaport provide a template for interpreting challenging behaviors called the ABC data sheet (Antecedent, Behavior, Consequence; p. 204).

Minahan and Rappaport also claim that behavior occurs in patterns with antecedents and responses as bookends (p. 23), and they provide an acronym to help teachers remember how to approach behaviors: F.A.I.R. stands for Functional hypothesis of behavior and antecedent analysis, Accommodations, Interaction Strategies, and Response Strategies (p. 31). This acronym means that when kids exhibit challenging behaviors, teachers should consider what occurred immediately before the behavior (antecedents). Then, they should plan accommodations that prevent those antecedents from arising until the student has been trained in underdeveloped skills. While the student is learning replacement behaviors, coping strategies, and new skills, the teacher should engage in relationship building (interaction strategies) so that the student trusts him or her and is comfortable. Finally, if challenging behaviors still occur, despite the teacher's efforts, Minahan and Rappaport recommend response strategies to decrease the likelihood that they will occur again.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Amy on May 23, 2012
Format: Paperback
The Behavior Code provides know-how and guidance to over-extended teachers working to meet the needs of all their students, while being drained by the demands of the most challenging few. The authors have made it their mission to enable teachers to reach their most demanding, at-risk students -and maintain an effective learning environment. This timely book provides a proven approach with constructive practices that can be readily implemented. The Behavior Code sends the hopeful and reassuring message that all children, including those with mental health issues, are able to be successful learners and valued members of our school community.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Suzanne on April 12, 2012
Format: Paperback
Jessica has finally shared her most successful behavioral interventions! I have worked with her for years and find myself wondering what Jess would do with this really challenging kiddo. Now, I can look it up! Thank you Jess - for all the time and energy you have invested in making sure that the rest of us can benefit from your intelligence and creativity. I highly recommend this book for even slightly challenging kids. I have to admit that I have modified some of the interventions to use with my son and occasionally... my husband (shh, don't tell).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mother and Grandmother on May 7, 2012
Format: Library Binding Verified Purchase
As a parent, I believe that all kids feel anxious, angry, or depressed occasionally. School can be tough on bad days, but we need help at home, too. The Behavior Code methods may be designed for the schoolroom, but I am so happy to have something to try at home, too! Just a couple of tips have helped already! Every parent can use this advice. We want to do everything we can to help our kids and give them good life tools. This book really helps.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By REF on December 2, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is an excellent resource. Although I am not a teacher, I am a parent of a child with anxiety and the tips and suggestions in this book has been so helpful. This book was so good that I bought a copy for my son's school so that all the teachers had the opportunity to use it as a resource.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Caitlin on May 12, 2012
Format: Paperback
The Behavior Code is a valuable resource for school clinicians, administrators and teachers alike. Not only does The Behavior Code help treaters understand the whole child and what factors contribute to disruptive behavior, it also provides concrete, classroom friendly interventions and resources.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By anonymous on April 23, 2012
Format: Paperback
"The Behavior Code" is based on two hit-the-nail-on-the-head premises that are critical for dedicated teachers who want to be as effective as possible in the classroom: outward behavior is a form of communication and, as teachers, we often operate on our intuition rather than on descriptive data. The book offers us a more effective and practical option: spend some initial time describing disruptive behaviors and then target our response to more underlying problems and longer-term solutions.

Reading the book was so insightful because I recognized my students so clearly in it and, unfortunately, I recognized my inadequate responses to their behaviors, too! The book has given me specific strategies to deal with my more disruptive students. It has ALSO given me a greater appreciation for those students, and for their desperate attempts to communicate their learning obstacles to me!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Educator on May 12, 2012
Format: Library Binding
This book has some fantastic, concrete strategies for teachers and school administrators to use when dealing with difficult behavior! I've been looking for a good reference to share with fellow educators, and I'm happy to finally find a source with workable strategies. It is easy to use and understand. I recommend it to anyone who works with students in the classroom!
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