One of the most important things we can do in ABA is to be prepared for behavior management. We can do this by making sure we are familiar with the behavior plan, including the behavior itself, the interventions, etc.
We can also do this by looking at the physical environment and making sure that we eliminate distractions and place objects appropriately in the treatment area.
Also, make sure you are “dressed for success” and your clothing and attire do not include anything that could obstruct your ability to safely handle situations that might arise.
Here are some behavior management guidelines to review:
We added a new program, gaining attention, because we've been noticing that he wants our attention but he'll throw things or doesn't know properly how to get your attention. So we're going to be teaching him to tap our shoulder as well as call our name when he wants our attention.
It is also important to avoid reacting to new behaviors. Remain calm and neutral and redirect the patient to the original activity to avoid inadvertently reinforcing the behavior. When these behaviors occur, make sure you document and report them to the BCBA.
Another helpful strategy is to offer the patient choices during sessions. This increases motivation by allowing the patient to act on their MOs and gives the patient some control during the session and may proactively avoid certain challenging behaviors.
EXAMPLEWhat to write with, where to sit, what to do first, etc.
You can also have options ready to go for down time activities. Some patients are more likely to engage in problem behaviors during unstructured time; helping the patient to engage in activities during breaks may prevent those behaviors.
One of the most important things you can do when managing any behavior is to remain calm. The individual is not mad at you. So there is no need to take the behavior personally.
Keep in mind that many behaviors you will encounter are just a method of communication for that individual. Another way to be proactive with behaviors is to consistently throughout the time with the individual praise them for the good behavior that you see them engage in, especially if you know that they usually engage in some kind of problem behavior to get the same thing. Above all, you want to make sure that you are consistent the entire time that you are caring for an individual.
So for example, have the same expectations of Johnny every single time he asks if he can play a video game. Did you get your homework done, or have you eaten all of your vegetables? whatever your expectation is that you have in place, make sure that you stay consistent with it.
Make sure that every single time you're consistent and that you don't give in at one point in time just because you had enough and you're done dealing with the behaviors. As we've been saying constantly throughout our talk today, consistency is going to be key in making sure that you help these individuals live more successful lives. Do you want the rug?
Where's the rug?
OK, you need to sit here. No. You need to sit right here. Sit down.
Sit right here. You need to sit here, buddy. No, set up. OK. You're going sit on a chair then, dude.
There you go. Thank you. You got one sticker for that.
High fives. Very good. What do you went after the one sticker?
iPhone. OK. Let's see. Touch your back. Very good.
See. You got it. High fives. I'll get it for you. OK, cool.
Components of a behavior intervention plan include
It is also important to know how to collect ABC data, as new behaviors can occur at any moment. ABC data is collected to determine the function of new behaviors:
EXAMPLEIf the patient engages in elopement, it may be beneficial to place them further from the door or place yourself between the patient and the door so you can block or redirect.
[MOVIE PLAYING IN BACKGROUND] We're watching Happy Feet right now, and it has helped us in into his feeding. As per a suggestion, we stop it and make it fun for him to take his next bite.
Take a bite.
Take a bite. Yay!
Not only did he feed himself his applesauce and laughed the whole time, he fed himself six or eight bites of soup, which he's never done. He's done that two meals in a row, so looking forward to today.