Made by Minnesota Educators

The creators of the curriculum, a group of educators at the St. Croix River Education District, started building Be Good People over Zoom sessions in April 2020. We are honored that this humble "quarantine project" is now supporting students across the world!

If you would like to use Be Good People, we ask that you please complete our registration form and then read our FAQs (below) to learn about training, updates, and more.

Easy and Effective

Our #1 priority was to make Be Good People as teacher-friendly as possible. Since its launch, we've made many sweeping enhancements based on teacher feedback. Teachers describe it as "self-driving" and "sub-proof."

Following best practices for locally-developed curriculum, Be Good People incorporates CASEL's SAFE elements. Its instructional features are common among evidence-based curriculums, and it is closely aligned with state SEL standards. At this time, we consider Be Good People to fall in ESSA's Tier 4 ("Demonstrates a Rationale").

Three Ingredients, Limitless Recipes

Be Good People doesn't lock you into a rigid sequence. We offer example schedules with meaningful progressions of activities, but we encourage you to customize them to find the right "recipe" for your school.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I receive updates?

We strongly recommend that users of Be Good People subscribe to our mailing list. We send a handful of emails each school year notifying our mailing list of significant updates to the curriculum.

How can I offer feedback?

We encourage you to use our feedback form (also linked in the footer of this website). We appreciate suggestions and input!

Specifics are very helpful to us (e.g., "In the staying on task lesson for 4-5, maybe you could add this photo to step 2: http://www..."

Are training resources, pacing guides, etc. available?

At the top of every grade band page (e.g., the 4-5 grade Core Edition page linked above), you'll find a "Make It Happen" button that takes you to a webpage filled with resources (e.g., videos that walk through lessons, videos that talk about how to plan an instructional sequence, etc.). For the Core Edition (Tier 1, school-wide instruction), example pacing guides are available for each grade, K-12.

If you work outside of our member districts and feel you need additional support, you can contact our SEL Services Coordinator, Nic van Oss (nvanoss@scred.k12.mn.us), the lead developer of the curriculum. Outside of his work for the St. Croix River Education District, Nic is able to contract with external districts as a consultant/trainer.

Can I contribute somehow?

Yes! We're very passionate about crowdsourcing and public educators supporting each other.

We strongly encourage staff in external districts who are benefiting from Be Good People to support the project by contributing Extension Activities. These are YouTube videos with discussion questions, read alouds, worksheets, etc. — just a collection of resources that teachers can use to enrich learning around the Be Good People lessons. If you share a resource with us, we will credit you as the creator (if you'd like).

Here is an Extension Activity slide template that you can copy if needed, and here is a dropbox where you can share resources with us.

Feel free to reach out to our SEL Services Coordinator, Nic van Oss (nvanoss@scred.k12.mn.us) if you have any questions.

Is there a cost to use the curriculum?

No, it is not monetized and not designed to make monetization possible (e.g., it includes many embedded YouTube videos and free-use elements).

We are not a for-profit publishing company — we are a small rural public district. We allow other districts to use Be Good People with purely altruistic intentions. If you like our work, we encourage you to learn more about our district, follow us on social media, etc.

If your school/district plans to implement Be Good People, we ask for three things:

In addition, please consider using or modifying our example pacing guides, monitoring fidelity with our observation/self-assessment forms, etc.

If I'm having trouble playing a video, what can I do?

There are two types of videos embedded into Be Good People presentations: (1) YouTube videos and (2) videos stored in Google Drive.

In nearly all cases, if you're having trouble playing a video, it's because of your school district's local restrictions. For example, Google Workspace districts can set teachers' YouTube access to Strict, Moderate, or Unrestricted

Over the summer of 2023, Google's algorithm for this filtering may have changed, as we encountered in August 2023 several examples of videos being "blocked/unavailable" that were previously unfiltered.

If you run into a hiccup where a video is unavailable, opening a browser tab (e.g., a Chrome tab) in "Incognito" or "Private" mode (i.e., where you're not logged in with your school email address), is a helpful way to confirm whether or not local filtering is causing the video to not display or if the video is actually broken/taken down from YouTube.

Can I make a copy of one of the slide presentations?

The presentations are deliberately set to be non-copyable, and we do not permit any copies to be made, either internally or externally.

There are numerous digital SEL curriculums available from publishing companies (e.g., CharacterStrong, Second Step, Rethink Ed). If a district pays a subscription fee, they obtain access to an online module of non-modifiable lessons. From the outset, the goal of this project was to mimic the experience of having access to one of those curriculums. We simply wanted to take that model and make it cost-free in order to support our member school districts. Aside from cost, in every other respect our intention is to recreate the experience of subscribing to a published digital curriculum.

If there are changes or improvements you would like, we strongly encourage you to submit feedback using the Google Form linked at the bottom of this website page. Development of the curriculum is ongoing and very active. We've spent thousands of hours making improvements to Be Good People, all of which were driven by teacher feedback and collaboration. It would be impossible to meaningfully improve many fragmented versions of the curriculum, which is a major reason why we do not permit the curriculum to be split off.

Can I use Pear Deck or a similar digital response tool?

No, because just like similar digital curriculums that are not designed for local modification (e.g., CharacterStrong, Second Step, Rethink Ed), the only way to add a digital response feature would be to build that feature into a custom software platform, and as a small rural school district that doesn't have its own custom software platform for Be Good People, that's impossible.

To support nonverbal response options, we encourage instructors to explore no-tech options. These options include, but are not limited to:

How can I add a lesson to Google Classroom?

This question comes up because when you click the "Add"/paperclip button in Google Classroom, Google Classroom wants to be able to make a copy of the file you're sharing with students. Because Be Good People lessons are non-copyable (see FAQ above), that's not a workable method for sharing the lessons with students in Google Classroom.

Instead, we recommend that you:

Are translated materials available?

Not at this time, and as a district we do not have a timetable for if or when translated versions of Be Good People might be created.

From a quality control perspective, we would only embark on a translation project if several parameters were met, which include:

Because Be Good People is a non-monetized curriculum created by staff at a small school district and because it makes heavy use of embedded YouTube and short-form video content that is only available in English, the infrastructure necessary for a translation project within the parameters outlined above would likely only be available through a significant partnership with a non-profit organization and fundamental changes to the curriculum itself (e.g., the video media content used throughout).

If your district has a need for translated materials (e.g., to support a dual language immersion program), we encourage you to investigate resources that are better positioned to meet your needs, such as a variety of published curriculums that are available in multiple languages.

Is there research available on the curriculum?

Be Good People is a locally developed curriculum created by educators at a small rural district. It is not published by an enterprise curriculum company, and it is not designed to make monetization possible (e.g., it includes many embedded YouTube videos and free-use elements).

As a district, we are open to partnerships with researchers and universities that would provide the infrastructure for research studies on Be Good People.

At this time, we consider Be Good People to fall in ESSA's Tier 4 ("Demonstrates a Rationale"). It is built on a well-defined theory of action. As a district, we monitor effectiveness through our district- and building-level data routines; however, we cannot isolate Be Good People as a factor or observe its effects relative to control groups.

We designed Be Good People with these limitations in mind, and our primary plan to support efficacy was to build the curriculum around CASEL's recommendations for locally-developed curriculums: the S.A.F.E. elements.