The Incredible Years Series is a set of three comprehensive, multifaceted, and developmentally based curricula for parents, teachers, and children designed to dovetail in order to promote emotional and social competence and to prevent, reduce, and treat behavior and emotional problems in young children (ages 2-8). In a report that emerged from the Division 12 Task Force on Effective Psychosocial Interventions (1995), the series was identified as one of two well-established treatments for conduct disorder (Brestan and Eyberg, 1998) and was selected by the Office for Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) as 1 of 11 model violence prevention programs (Webster-Stratton et al., 2001).
This series of programs addresses multiple risk factors across settings (school and home) known to be related to the development of conduct disorders in children. In all three training programs, trained facilitators use videotape scenes to structure the content, stimulate group discussion and problem solving, and promote the sharing of ideas among participants.
Incredible Years Training for Parents. The Incredible Years parenting series includes three types of parent programs. The Basic program emphasizes parenting skills known to promote children’s social competence and reduce behavior problems, such as: how to play with children, helping children learn, effective praise and use of incentives, effective limit-setting, and strategies to handle misbehavior. The Advance program emphasizes parental interpersonal skills, such as: effective communication skills, anger management, problem-solving between adults, and ways to give and get support. The Supporting Your Child’s Education (known as SCHOOL) emphasizes parenting approaches designed to promote children’s academic skills, such as: reading skills, parental involvement in setting up predictable homework routines, and building collaborative relationships with teachers.
Incredible Years Training for Teachers. This series emphasizes effective classroom management skills, such as: the effective use of teacher attention, praise, and encouragement, the use of incentives for difficult behavior problems, proactive teaching strategies, how to manage inappropriate classroom behaviors, and the importance of building positive relationships with students. In addition, a series of training videotapes are used to train teachers how to implement the Dinosaur Social Skills and Problem-Solving Curriculum as a prevention program in the classroom with all children. There is both a preschool/kindergarten and grade 1-2 version of this training.
Incredible Years Training for Children. The Dinosaur Child Curriculum emphasizes training children in such skills as emotional literacy, empathy or perspective taking, friendship skills, anger management, interpersonal problem solving, school rules, and how to be successful at school. It is designed for use as a pull-out treatment program for small groups of children exhibiting conduct problems or can be offered to the entire classroom in circle time discussions combined with small-group activities. There are 90 lessons designed to be offered twice a week over a period of 1 to 3 years.