Setting Behavioral Expectations at Home for Children with Disabilities

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LISA: Tag Lin Sleboda

The Tendency Toward Leniency

  • Guilt about the child’s illness or disability
  • History of the child being very medically fragile and therefore not requiring discipline
  • Feeling that the child doesn’t understand enough to have discipline

Help the Parent Acknowledge there’s a Problem

  • Ask how behaviors affect the child at home
  • Talk about how the behaviors affect the child’s ability to make friends, progress in school, and participate in age-appropriate activities

Provide Suggestions and Model Strategies

  • Start small, start with just a few rules
  • Provide visual aids to help the child remember those rules
  • Help the parent set and keep firm consequences for behaviors
  • Train the parent on using supports that will prevent behavior problems from occurring in the first place (visual schedules, pre-teaching skills, practicing skills ahead of time, pre-directs, redirects)