In this post, I talked a lot about finding your own positive reinforcement as a mom. You can set up your own contingencies and reward yourself. Well, this past week or so, I've found myself in contact with LOTS of reinforcers that I didn't contrive, and I couldn't be more thrilled.
Remember what positive reinforcement is, exactly? Well in this older post,
we reviewed that it's not just something nice. The desired behavior has to increase following the reinforcement.
So, how did this take place in my life in copious amounts this week? In my analytic way, I'm going to lay it out for you.
I put forth some effort to create a fun but not super high maintenance first birthday party for my daughter --> She loved it. My girl smiled and laughed and was quite a little doll baby.--> I will put forth effort again to make a fun thing for her. Did I actually put forth effort to make things fun for her yet? Sure- we had a couple of great playdates with friends this week!
I work hard every day as a stay at home mom (okay, that one's not really a well-defined target behavior, but it's late and I'm tired after working hard all day as a SAHM)--> My mom told me nice things about my parenting and gave lots of support and compliments when she was here this past weekend --> I have continued to work hard on my parenting as a SAHM.
My behaviors that put me in contact with positive reinforcement were things I don't do for myself. They are things I do for my daughter and will continue to do for her because that is my job as a mom and I love her more than I thought possible.
BUT the positive reinforcers serve the purpose of adding joy to that job. They increase the likelihood of me doing my job well in the future. I enjoy my job. I want those reinforcers and doing my job well this week got them for me!
My list of things that were reinforcing to me this week due to doing my mom job well:
As a mom, it's easy to feel like you deserve recognition for a job well done. You don't get a paycheck for this job and you don't always get the praise or thanks you deserve. When the positive reinforcers appear in your life- recognize them and enjoy them!!
You are doing a good job, moms! Keep up the good work!!
Read more about behavior analysis for moms!
Many children with autism have at some point wandered away from their homes or safety.
First responders are often the ones to find these children and communicating with a child with autism can take special training and/or skills.
Here are a few free resources for our first responders to help learn more about autism spectrum disorders and be prepared to really help these children and families as easily and efficiently as possible!
First responders are our heroes- if we can make their jobs easier and more effective with some specialized training, let's do it!
Free online courses from Relias Learning
I have done ABA courses through this company and recommend them highly!
National Autism Association safety toolkit tailored to first responders. This is a pdf document you can download through this link or here below.
Behavior analysis is the study of behavior. It is the science of behavior.
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the application of the principles of learning and motivation from Behavior Analysis, and the procedures and technology derived from those principles, to the solution of problems of social significance. Many decades of research have validated treatments based on ABA.
Applied behavior analysis (ABA) is the use of research-based techniques and principles to bring about meaningful and positive change in behavior.
What isn’t ABA?
What is ABA?
What isn’t ABA?
What is ABA?
Applied behavior analysis has been proven to be effective time and time again with a huge variety of populations. That is why I feel so strongly about sharing these positive behavior strategies with Moms of Littles.
We can help our Littles be successful in the most positive and efficient manner by relying on scientists to do all the background research. We can rely on proven methods and spend our time focusing on helping our Littles learn and grow!
Check out Parenting with Science: Behavior Analysis Saves Mom's Sanity to learn more about ABA for Moms!
Research is COOL!
Baer, D. M., Wolf, M. M., & Risley, T. R. (1968). SOME CURRENT DIMENSIONS OF APPLIED BEHAVIOR ANALYSIS1. Journal of applied behavior analysis, 1(1), 91-97.
Cooper, J., Heron, T., & Heward, W. (2007). Basic Concepts. In Applied Behavior Analysis(2nd ed.). Columbus: Pearson.
Sulzer-Azaroff, B., & Mayer, G. R. (1991). Behavior analysis for lasting change. Holt, Rinehart & Winston.
Are you currently studying to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst? For the summer I am opening two spots for distance supervision for BCBA candidates.
When I was a special education teacher wanting to switch gears to work as a private Applied Behavior Analysis therapist, summers were the best time for me to work toward my goal!
If you are interested in distance BCBA supervision, fill out this form!
If you need more information about BCBA supervision, please see the Behavior Analyst Certification Board experience standards!
My Little has recently decided to fling herself backward in protest whenever she is unhappy with whatever I have done to her so horrifically- like take away something that is potentially unsafe for her.
Something that has been working in my home is: providing choices. Before I take something away from my girl, I give her two things to pick from instead. I can prevent the mini-tantrum coming my way by heading it off at the pass.
No, you can’t play with the dog’s bone, but would you like this ball or this stuffed monkey instead.
I have to make sure that what I’m offering her is something goooood. Something she actually will want tot hold and play with as an alternative to whatever has her engaged at the moment.
Offering choices has been shown in behavioral research to be an effective strategy to decrease problem behavior.
Research says it works. Maybe you should try it, too!
Give your child some control over their day, their activities, their food. Offer choices and prevent problem behavior as much as you possibly can. Wouldn’t you rather just avoid the tantrum altogether? I would!
Want to learn more ABA strategies for moms? Check out my e-book!
Don't take my word for it. Research says so, too!
Dunlap, G., DePerczel, M., Clarke, S., Wilson, D., Wright, S., White, R., & Gomez, A. (1994). Choice making to promote adaptive behavior for students with emotional and behavioral challenges. Journal of applied behavior analysis,27(3), 505-518.
Dyer, K., Dunlap, G., & Winterling, V. (1990). Effects of choice making on the serious problem behaviors of students with severe handicaps. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 23(4), 515-524.
Romaniuk, C., Miltenberger, R., Conyers, C., Jenner, N., Jurgens, M., & Ringenberg, C. (2002). The influence of activity choice on problem behaviors maintained by escape versus attention. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis,35(4), 349-362.
Mother's Day is coming- a grand holiday to celebrate my people. The MOMS! Moms totally deserve all the flowers, brunch, jewelry, fancy handbags (thank you sweet hubby!), homemade artwork, etc.
But Moms deserve this EVERY day! Not just on the first Sunday of May. Is that right?
Anway- Moms, you need to find some positive reinforcement for yourselves those other 364 days a year. Find some things to strengthen your mothering behaviors. What will reward your good work?
In a perfect world, your children would always say “thank you” and your husband would walk in the door each evening complimenting the state of your home, the meal you’ve somehow gotten ready, and how fantastic your children are doing. In the real world, we need to learn to self-reinforce and to put ourselves in a position to receive positive reinforcement from other sources.
Here are some ideas from my Stay at Home Mom existence:
What do you do to reward yourself? What are you hoping to get from those around you this Mother's Day to help reinforce that awesome Mommy behavior of yours?
I have a whole chapter devoted to this topic in Parenting with Science: Behavior Analysis Saves Mom's Sanity. Check it out!
This week was all about the Premack Principle.
Remember what that is? It's "First ___, then ____." Follow a regular plain old un-fun activity with something good.
First veggies, then chocolate. First homework, then screen time.
I found myself saying "First ____, then ____" ALL the time this week!
First buckle, then toys. (In the car seat)
First buckle, then snacks. (In the high chair)
First buckle, then wheeeee. (In the swing)
First sit, then toys. (In the bathtub)
Notice a pattern here? My Little wants her freeeeedom! Well, when she realizes that being restrained in these places (for safety reasons!)can lead to something good, she protests a lot less. Even when I forget to say it, I find it easier to get her in the car, in the highchair, wherever because I've said it SO many times before. She's getting the hang of things!
I've even overheard my sweet husband saying "First_____, then _____" when he didn't know I was listening. Score!
From the book, Parenting with Science:
Using the consistent language of “First _____, then ____” lets your child know that something good is coming and that they have some control over the situation. They can choose to engage in that first behavior (do your homework, get buckled in the car, eat your veggies) in order to get the then thing promised to them.
What behavior strategies did YOU use this week???
Interested in learning more behavior strategies for moms? Parenting with Science: Behavior Analysis Saves Mom’s Sanity is available now!
NEW e-book now available!
Parenting with Science: Behavior Analysis Saves Mom's Sanity
Get it on amazon today!
Applied Behavior Analysis uses evidence-based practices to help reduce problem behaviors and increase desired behaviors. Who needs these strategies more than anyone? Parents! Especially parents with young children.
In this book, learn 10 strategies of ABA to help prevent problem behavior in your family. Read funny examples and get tips on behavior management to help save Mom's (and Dad's) sanity!
ABA is often used for children with autism spectrum disorders, but the benefits don't stop there. Use positive behavior supports to cut down on tantrums and hopefully help stop Mom's hair from turning gray. Okay- no promises on the hair thing. But positive behavior supports are evidence-based and proven to work with any and all people- even the Littles that run our households!
Every technique presented is backed up by research from the Behavior Analysis, Educational Psychology, and related fields. There is an extensive bibliography at the end that I know you are dying to read.
The goal is to help parents come in contact with the actual research-based methods used by clinicians worldwide. Parents can implement these tools and reap the benefits of a calmer household with lots of positive reinforcement for all the wonderful behaviors of their children.
ABA works. Research tells us that. Why not try it in your home?
Leanne Page, MEd, BCBA