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FIRST STEP Next is a collaborative home and school intervention for preschool through second grade. The teacher, family member, and behavioral coach (for example, school counselor, early childhood educator, or behavioral specialist) teach the at-risk child skills that contribute to school success and the development of friendships.

This evidence-based early intervention program is designed for young children who exhibit challenging behaviors such as defiance, conflicts with peers, and disruptive behaviors.

FIRST STEP Next Process

  1. Multistep Screening collects information about the problem behavior.
  2. Coach works one-on-one with the focus student to teach these school success skills:
    • Follow Directions
    • Be Safe
    • Ask for Attention the Right Way
    • Be a Team Player
    • Do Your Best
    • Be Cool
    • Mistakes Are Okay
  3. In the classroom, the student earns points and praise for displaying the skills during the Green Card game.
  4. A home component links skills introduced at school to the home environment.

FIRST STEP Next Materials

The FIRST STEP Next tote bag includes everything a coach needs to implement the program:

  • Coach's Manual with CD of reproducible forms and DVD with training videos
  • Super Students! Lessons
  • Set of Cooperation Cards (trading cards with cartoon characters and skill steps)
  • 3 Green and Red Cards with lanyards
  • Super Students! Book
  • Reward Cards (coach writes rewards on these and lets student draw one) and dry-erase marker
  • 3 FIRST STEP Next Student Sets

Each FIRST STEP Next Student Set contains all the consumable materials needed for a coach, teacher, and family to work with a single focus student.

Coach's Folder holds forms for determining eligibility, conducting meetings, communicating with the student's family, monitoring progress, and maintaining skills after FIRST STEP Next implementation ends.

Teacher's Folder contains materials the classroom teacher needs to take over classroom implementation of FIRST STEP Next. The Teacher's Workbook provides implementation guidance and practical tips for supporting student behavior. The Green and Red Card is used to give feedback to the focus student, and the Skill Review Chart makes it easy for the teacher to review the skills the student is learning.

Home and School Connections Folder provides family members with materials needed to carry out the 5- to 10-minute family component of FIRST STEP Next. The Home and School Connections Workbook includes a daily log to prompt positive interactions with the child and activities to reinforce the skills the child learns in school. Lesson cards and a coloring book help family members and the child review skills together. 

Additional Student Sets are available in sets of three. NEW! Spanish-language Student Sets

You may also purchase additional Super Students! books, which are used to teach students social skills lessons. An optional Gymboss timer and wristband can be purchased to time the intervals that are part of the classroom Green Card game.

This memo from lead author Hill Walker outlines the new features in First Step NEXT as compared with the original First Step to Success.


For Grades:
Publication Date:
  Bag contains Coach's Guide with CD and DVD of training videos, Super Students! Lessons, Super Students! Book, set of Cooperation Cards, set of Reward Cards, 3 Green and Red cards with lanyards, 3 Student Sets
Product ID:
  Hill Walker, Brianna Stiller, Cristy Coughlin, Annemieke Golly, Marilyn Sprick, and Edward Feil
Price: $485.00

Hill Walker, Ph.D.

Dr. Hill Walker


Dr. Hill Walker is Professor of Special Education, codirector of the Institute on Violence and Destructive Behavior, and former Director of the Center on Human Development in the College of Education, University of Oregon. He is also a Senior Research Scientist at the Oregon Research Institute in Eugene, Oregon.

Dr. Walker has a longstanding interest in behavioral assessment and in the development of effective school-based interventions for students with a range of behavior disorders. His research interests include social skills assessment, curriculum development and intervention, longitudinal studies of aggression and antisocial behavior, and the development of universal, early screening procedures and targeted interventions for detecting and addressing the problems of students who are at-risk for social-behavioral adjustment problems and/or later school drop-out.

He is also the lead author of the 1996 Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders article in which the Institute of Medicine’s prevention taxonomy of primary, secondary and tertiary prevention was applied to schools as a framework for allocating resources to address the needs of students at differing levels of severity in their behavioral challenges. This article has been widely cited and its impact has registered broadly at school, district, state and federal levels. The Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports (PBIS) approach is based upon this reconceptualization of how schools accommodate all students.

Dr. Walker has over 175 publications and is the author or co-author of 19 books. In addition to developing Systematic Screening for Behavior Disorders and the Early Screening Project, Dr. Walker was the lead investigator of research and development of the First Step to Success early intervention program. He is co-editor of Interventions for Academic and Behavior Problems in a Three-Tier Model including RTI (2010) and co-editor of The Handbook on Research With Emotional and Behavioral Disorders in School (2014).

Dr. Walker is the only faculty member to receive the University of Oregon's highest honor—the Presidential Medal awarded in 2000 for outstanding service to the institution. He is the 1993 recipient of the CEC Research Award and was the first recipient of the new CEC Distinguished Researcher Award in 2013.

More information about Dr. Walker is available on the Oregon Research Institute website.

Brianna Stiller, Ph.D.

Dr. Brianna Stiller


Dr. Stiller is in her fifth year as coordinator of Positive Behavior Support (PBS) programs in School District 4J in Eugene, OR, where she has worked as a school psychologist for 31 years. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a Ph.D. in school psychology in 1987. In addition to the First Step program, Dr. Stiller has co-authored Bully Prevention in Positive Behavior Support, a curriculum designed to dovetail with schoolwide PBS at the elementary level. She is also collaborating with school district personnel and researchers at the University of Oregon to author a middle school program, Expect Respect. Additional projects include the IPBS (Intensive Positive Behavior Support) grant, which is a systems approach for screening, intervening, and monitoring progress of high-needs students. Dr. Stiller has been very active in supporting equity at the school level and was a key person in passing a district policy to support transgender and gender nonconforming students in May 2015.

Cristy Coughlin, Ph.D.

Dr. Cristy Coughlin


Dr. Coughlin holds a Ph.D. in school psychology from the University of Oregon and an undergraduate degree in psychology from Western Michigan University. Dr. Coughlin has worked as a First Step coach, school-based behavioral consultant, and program evaluator for educational projects based in the United States, Australia, and Africa. Her areas of expertise are oriented around educational assessment, applied behavior analysis, and translating educational research to practice.


Annemieke Golly, Ph.D.

Dr. Annemieke Golly


Dr. Golly was born and raised in the Netherlands and is currently a research scientist at the Oregon Research Institute. As a certified special education teacher, she taught elementary children with a range of special needs for 25 years. Dr. Golly received her Ph.D. in Special Education at the University of Oregon. Her areas of expertise are early and preventive intervention, behavior management, and classroom and schoolwide management. Dr. Golly has been instrumental in designing, implementing, and conducting nationwide research on the First Step program. She also has implemented behavior management strategies for pre-K through grade 12 throughout the United States, Canada, South Africa, and Turkey. For the past 5 years, she has been training, coaching, and providing technical assistance to school and youth services staffs in the Netherlands for nationwide implementation of First Step and BEST Behavior, a K–12 positive behavior support program.

Marilyn Sprick, M.S.

Marilyn Sprick


Marilyn Sprick is the lead author of Read Well K–2, Read Well Spelling and Writing Conventions 1 and 2, and Read Well Composition 1. With more than 35 years in education, Marilyn has been a general education teacher, special education teacher, and Title I learning specialist.

As an educational consultant, Marilyn has provided training in literacy, curriculum adaptation, and collaborative instruction for thousands of teachers throughout the United States and Canada. Marilyn’s focus is on scaffolding and differentiating curriculum, explicit instruction, motivating students, and diagnostic prescriptive teaching. She is well respected for her ability to inspire teachers and translate research into classroom practice.

Marilyn is also author of “Intervention B: Academic Assistance” in Interventions: Evidence-Based Behavioral Strategies for Individual Students and a coauthor of Meaningful Work, Tough Kid: On-Task in a Box, and SMART Kids: Social Grace, Manners, and Respectful Talk. Marilyn is president of Pacific Northwest Publishing, a small, elite publishing house that focuses on highly effective, research-based resources for educators.

Read Well K-2 Training. Marilyn Sprick and a group of highly qualified trainers provide expert professional development in the K–2 Read Well programs. For additional information, training tips and hints, visit the Read Well Teach Well website.

View all titles by Marilyn Sprick


Edward Feil, Ph.D.

Dr. Ed Feil


Dr. Feil has been conducting research and develping intervention tools since 1993. He has authored papers on early intervention assessment methodology, interactive Internet interventions, and early child psychopathology. Dr. Feil has served as principal investigator and co-investigator on several Department of Education, National Institute of Health, Head Start/ACYF, Center for Disease Prevention, and foundation grants. His research includes a randomized controlled trial of the Internet-adapted PALS program for low-income parents of infants at risk for maltreatment and a multisite randomized control study to adapt a school-home intervention for preschoolers with disruptive behaviors in order to increase its effective use with early childhood programs serving low-income children. Dr Feil is especially interested in incorporating Internet technology into the delivery of evidence-based interventions to hard-to-reach populations. He is president of the board of Head Start of Lane County and serves as a consultant to several local service agencies and national research centers.

As a Tier 2 intervention for students whose misbehavior fails to respond to classwide prevention, First Step has not only been established as evidence based across four large-scale randomized trials, but it is also the most fun to implement. Teachers and kids just love it!

—Steve Forness
 Distinguished Professor Emeritus
of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at UCLA

The FIRST STEP Next intervention is a great program designed to help children with challenging behaviors achieve school success. As a former early childhood teacher, I am constantly looking for new strategies to make a difference for young children. This intervention has streamlined tools to help implement positive behavior strategies in the classroom and reach students who may need additional supports.

—Kiersten Curry
First Step behavioral coach

FIRST STEP Next is a wonderful school intervention program designed to promote academic success and positive school and social engagement! The First Step NEXT materials are organized in three user-friendly categories (coach, teacher, family), which make the program easy to implement in the school and home setting. The seven Super Student Skills are a great way for the First Step coach to connect with the student and teach them about appropriate social skills for use inside and outside the classroom. The school-to-home connection piece makes the positive reinforcement come full circle!

—Ally Miller
First Step behavioral coach

The FIRST STEP Next intervention is just what many students, teachers, and parents need. The social skills training is extremely well packaged and teaches children what so many teachers want them to know. The Green Card game is a wonderful tool to help improve teacher classroom management skills and to reinforce the Super Student skills taught through one-on-one instruction. FIRST STEP Next is a must-have intervention for any specialized instructional support provider who is charged with teaching young children with challenging behavior and lacking in essential social skills as well as supporting teacher classroom management skills.

—First Step behavioral coach