PBIS at Home
Research shows that when behavioral expectations are clearly established and taught in the home, children's problem behavior is prevented or reduced.† It it works at school, it can work at home, right?
#1 Clear Expectations
Create a behavior matrix that establishes expected behaviors for essential routines at home.† Start with the main behaviors that your children know from school...
- BE RESPECTFUL
- BE RESPONSIBLE
- BE SAFE
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Always state the expectations positively.† For example "Put your home on the table as soon as you get home from school", rather thank "Don't leave your homework in your backpack".
#2† Family Meeting
It is a good idea to hold a Family Meeting to present the matrix at home.† This can also be done with your child's counselor from the Grow School.
- Explain the expected behavior. (it is a good idea to get input form the kids, but you don't need their approval.† You're the adult).
- Demonstrate the expected behavior.
- Role play/Practice the behavior.† (Just like in sports, the skills are built in practice, not in the "real game".)
- Explain the positive reinforcers and the consequences.
It is essential to consistently provide positive reinforcement of expected behavior.†
- Point/sticker chart: One point/sticker is earned for each expectation met.† The child could have a goal and earn a reward for reaching the goal.
- There could be a menu of rewards, some big, some small that a child can buy with their points.
- "When we earn 50 points as a family we will..."
- You could do a drawing, like we do at school... more points=more entries.
- What are some low cost/no cost reinforcers for your family/home?
Well, you will have to do it fore a while to establish the routine.† But over time you might find that you have to change it up to keep it fresh, or add new expectations for changing situations (a new family member joins the household).† The real payoff is the positive interaction.
Notes about Positive Reinforcement...
- Verbal praise is the most effective tool for teaching and maintaining positive behavior.
- Praise should be specific and clearly linked to the behavior you are reinforcing.† Say: "I like how you are picking up your toys", instead of "Great job." Say: "Thanks for being responsible and putting away your bike", instead of "I† LOVE you when you pick up your bike." Say: "Great job following directions at the grocery store today." Don't add: " Why can't you do that every time?!"
When problem behavior occurs it is important to:
- Remain calm.
- Remind your child of the expectations.
- Re-teach/Model and have your child practice what behavior is expected.
- Use consequences appropriately.† Decide ahead of time what consequences there will be for problem behaviors.
- Give the minimum amount of attention required to the misbehavior
- Use a consequence that is age appropriate and related to the misbehavior.
- Related: left your bike out, lose your bike privileges for tomorrow.
- Not related: left your bike out, no dessert.
- The good news: promoting positive behavior in the home using PBIS principles is proven to make a positive difference in 80% of families.
- The bad news (kind of):
- Nothing works for everyone
- You have to work at it and stay with it!
- The difference: YOU will feel more positive when you focus on what is going right.
- Your kids will respond to the positive change in YOU and give you more reason to feel positive...