Today we begin our home ABA programming. I met with Will's coordinator on Monday, and she gave me some great ideas on where to begin.
Right now, we are focusing on three main things:
- Sitting at the Work Table
- Learning to Wait
- Taking Turns
Sitting at the work table: Right now, Will's biggest challenge is completing task demands. He actually has some good requesting skills as well as early joint attention and imitation. However, we have the most issues when we ask Will to do something that he doesn't want to do. As you can imagine, this doesn't go really well at school because there are lots of demands placed during a school day. His current avoidance behaviors include what his teacher has now coined as the "Stop, Drop, and Flop" as well as pinching, kicking, and hollering.
So, for now, we are putting favored activities, easy activities such as cause and effect toys, and reinforcers like food at the table. When Will responds to the demand of "come sit down" he will be reinforced. After he is able to do this successfully for 10-20 trials, we will begin increasing his time at the table, starting with favored activities.
Learning to wait: Will has a terrible time when someone asks him to wait. So, we are being very careful with our use of the word wait, and actually teaching it by telling him to wait, counting to five, and then reinforcing him with what he wants immediately. We are doing this only in situations where he can have what he wants right away.
Taking turns: When Will is playing with something, we are going to give a verbal prompt of "3-2-1, my turn", take the toy and reinforce him with food. Then, almost immediately, he gets the toy back. We will phase out the food hopefully quickly and eventually extend the time.
I am hopeful that these things are going to help! With Will, it isn't so much the skills he has or doesn't have, rather it is the compliance that gets in the way every time. This is so vital to functioning within society and within a school so as you can imagine, we are very excited to get started!