Prompting - It is important to avoid debates. Verbal prompts should be kept to a minimum. Anything more than one request is probably too much. Give one verbal prompt and DO NOT REPEAT IT. Repeating will teach him to ignore your verbal prompts. Go to a physical prompt after the first verbal.
Reinforcement - Have POTENT reinforcers with you for any child who is having difficulty following directions. Keep them in your pouch at all times. Give a potent reinforcer for all responses that are complied with on the first request. Fade back to intermittent reinforcement (after a week or so of continuous, go to reinforcing roughly every second response and then roughly every third etc).
It is MOST important that once you make a request, you do not withdraw it. Even if a major tantrum ensues, if you withdraw the request, you will be reinforcing the tantrum. If the child is merely being noncompliant and you give up, this will teach the student to have endurance in avoiding you. Once you have made a request you are trapped! You have to stay with it until it is carried through or until you have successfully physically prompted it.
Many children have histories of reinforcement that suggest they can avoid by tantrumming or simply outlast the person making the request. That must stop, now.This is a situation where we need a great deal of effort now to avoid constant struggles in the future.
Provided by Dr Bobby Newman for PEAT News Issue 2
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