pax_logo2DPI has received a 5 year grant in 2010 from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health S Administration (SAMHSA) to implement an evidence-based intervention in 4 Elementary schools in Broward County. This intervention is the “Good Behavior Game”, also known as “The PAX Game”.  The PAX Game is presently the most proven prevention and protection tool teachers can use to improve the lifetime outcomes of every child in the classroom.

PAX is currently being implemented with Kindergarten, Grade 1, and Grade 2 students at :

  • Dillard Elementary School
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Elementary School
  • Rock Island Elementary School

Scientific studies show that playing the PAX Game leads to reduced classroom disruptions, and fewer impulsive behavior, aggressive behaviors, referrals and suspensions.  During the second year implementing PAX in the 4 Broward County schools, there has been a significant decrease in Spleems and referrals in our participating classrooms.  Click on this link to view Broward County’s results.  Not only is PAX beneficial for all students in a classroom and has lasting positive outcomes, students LOVE to “play” the game!   Click on this link to see pictures of PAX in action!

What is PAX?

The PAX Game uses some specific and unusual language that students learn quickly.   “PAX” is based on a Latin word that stands for Peace, Productivity, Health, and Happiness.  “Spleems” are misbehaviors that occur in the classroom that are disruptive and interfere in learning. “Tootles” are the opposite of tattles. They are kind words that you say to and about others.  Click on this link for a quick review of the PAX FAQ Sheet.

To find out more about the origins of the Good Behavior Game and the 4th grade teacher, Muriel Saunders, who first implemented the Game in 1967, go to: //

Research, Resources & References

There have been many studies to support the positive outcome of PAX, including two studies referenced below:

 Study 1:

Randomized controlled trial of 14 1st grade classrooms (407 students) from urban, low income Baltimore Schools

At age 19-21 (14 years after random assignment to a PAX classroom), male students in GBG groups show:

  • 50% lower rate of lifetime illicit drug abuse/dependence  (19% VS 38%)
  • 50% less likely to smoke 10 cigs per day or more (7% VS 17%)
  • 35% lower rate of lifetime alcohol abuse/dependence
  • sizable increase in high school graduation rates
  • sizable decrease in lifetime major depressive disorder and anti social personality disorder

The largest effects on all outcomes are for those males rated highly aggressive by their teachers at the beginning of grade 1.

 Study 2:

Randomized controlled trial of 27 1st grade classrooms (678 students) receiving Good Behavior Game and curriculum enhancements:

At age 11 (end of 6th grade) students in GBG groups show:

  • Less likely to have lifetime conduct disorder (4% VS 10%)
  • 35% less likely to have been suspended during the previous year (22% VS 34%)
  • 29% less likely to have received mental health services (15% VS 21%)

At age 13 (end of 8th grade) student In GBG groups show:

  • 28% less likely to have started smoking (34% VS 47%)
  • Less likely to have tried cocaine, crack, or heroin (3% VS 7%)
  • (No effects of alcohol, marijuana, or inhalants)

To read more on studies and research outcomes, as well as further resources and references, see Social Programs That Work, 2010 , “The Good Behavior Game” at: //

To find out more about Universal Behavioral Vaccines, the actual game itself, and Dr. Dennis Embry’s work behind the Good Behavior Game, see:


Parents are always encouraged to learn about their child’s classroom and participate in the learning. Parents of participating students have been sent a PAX flyer (in Haitian Creole, Spanish, or English) to share the exciting information and positive outcomes of PAX.  Click on this link to view the PAX Parent Flyer and learn more!


PAX can be trained at any interested Elementary School for $300 per teacher (minimum of 4 teachers). This fee includes:

  • 4 hours of teacher training
  • Coaches training  (additional 2 hours)
  • All materials
  • 2 months of weekly support (2 hours per week).
  • Please contact our department to arrange training, 754-321-1655.