MindOH!, a Houston-based company founded last year, has completed a pilot of three web-based character education modules in three Houston middle schools. Key, Johnston, and Marshall middle schools all participated in MindOH!’s beta program to test the modules and their impact on students during the disciplinary process.

MindOH! modules are designed to reach students during the disciplinary process at a time when they are trying to communicate the circumstances that warranted punishment. In most school systems, when students act out they are sent to the principal’s office or assigned to detention or suspension. Few, if any, behavioral corrections are made when a student is waiting to see school authorities or are “serving time.” These moments can actually be counterproductive, as students use this time to create excuses for their behavior, assign blame to others, and consider ways to avoid responsibility and consequences, the company says.

“MindOH! seizes the opportunity when a student is involved in the discipline process and is in conflict over how to communicate what happened ,” said Beth Carls, president of MindOH!. “The modules engage students and make their disciplinary time more productive. Students interact with the modules and complete written activities that allow them to reflect on their actions and consider new, positive ways to deal with problems. The first three modules encourage kids to accept responsibility for their actions and gain more respect for themselves and others.”

The three middle schools will provide MindOH! with feedback to help improve the modules over the summer. In addition to enhancing the first three modules, “What’s Up?,” “Rule 1,” and “Taking Charge,” the company also plans to create three additional modules, “You Choose,” “You Understand,” and “You Make a Difference.” MindOH!’s middle school series will be available for purchase nationally in September.