Here’s a little insight to the ways that Beautiful Mind Center for Autism, a Los Angeles based Behavioral Therapy clinic, has put behavioral management programs into practice within their clients homes, schools and communities. While working with many forms of behavioral issues, and specializing in early intervention to help correct behavioral problems, our team at Beautiful Mind Center has put together a few tips to help parents set boundaries, goals, and stay consistent while working with their child on the spectrum to reach behavioral milestones.
1. Set A Schedule – It is important to make your child aware of what is expected of them. Work with your child’s teachers, therapists and other family members within your home to set up a daily schedule for your child with autism to follow. Leave a visual copy of this schedule in a place where your child can refer to it regularly and check off each activity as you go to show them what they are accomplishing.
2. Incorporate Breaks or Fun Activities – All children (with our without behavioral problems) have short attention spans. Remember to leave time for breaks throughout the day or to schedule activities you know your child will love and allow them to have some fun, play outside or with their favorite toys, watch a short video and just be a kid.
3. Create a Safe Environment – Your child on the spectrum will feel safer if there is structure within the home and at school. Work with your child’s teachers to incorporate similar rules at home so that structure follows your child throughout their day.
4. Redirect Inappropriate Behaviors – It is important to validate your child’s feeling or wants, but it is also very important to set boundaries and guidelines for your child with autism to follow. Let your child know what the consequences will be for inappropriate behavior and follow through with those consequences if they do not listen to you.
5. Recognize Progress and Good Effort – Set up a chart for your child with autism that tracks their progress. Reward their efforts with a gold star or a sticker of their choice and give them praise when they complete a goal, go above and beyond, or try their best at something (no matter what the outcome is).
6. Be Consistent – This is the most important thing you can learn and teach your child. Constancy in behavioral therapy is key. Do what you say you will do, be where you say you will be, and always follow through. By showing them that you are consistent with your actions and behaviors, your child with autism will learn by example and become more consistent with actions and behavioral as well.