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Thinking For A Change

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JusticeWorks YouthCare is using the Thinking for a Change (T4C) curriculum with youth with a history of juvenile justice issues.

T4C is an integrated, cognitive behavioral change program for juvenile offenders providing cognitive restructuring, social skills development, and conflict resolution.  T4C has a curriculum teaching youth who have offended how to change their thinking patterns and behavior.

The Thinking for a Change is:

  • Curriculum based
  • Uses a cognitive behavioral approach
  • Can be done in a classroom setting
  • Targets youth who have offended at a mild to moderate level
  • Assists with impulsivity, unnecessary aggression, and other anti-social behaviors
  • Promotes healthy communication patterns for youth

T4C Program Components

According to the developers, T4C stresses interpersonal communication skill development and confronts the youth’s thought patterns that can lead to problematic behaviors. The program has three components: cognitive self-change, social skills, and problem-solving skills. Lessons on cognitive self-change provide the youth with a thorough process for self-reflection concentrated on uncovering antisocial thoughts, feelings, attitudes, and beliefs. Social skills lessons prepare youths to engage in prosocial interactions based on self-understanding and awareness of the impact that their actions may have on others. Finally, problem-solving skills integrate the two other components and provide youths with a step-by-step process to address challenges and stressful situations they may encounter in their lives.  Research conducted has demonstrated lower rates of recidivism for youth who have participated in the program.

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