Possible Behavior Plan for 4yo.. Need a little input..

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by christine89, Oct 17, 2011.

  1. christine89

    christine89 Companion

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    Oct 17, 2011

    Hi. So there is a 4yo Pre-K boy in my class who has struggled from day one. He's just had a hard time adjusting to the structure and I really feel like he's got something more going on attention-wise (I suspect ADD/ADHD). I know it may seem controversial to jump to that conclusion, but I feel like I see the signs the more I observe him. He struggles to sit still even for a short amount of time, he's very defiant at times, and will often interrupt and even shout out sometimes. The thing that makes me wonder if it is ADD/ADHD is that I don't think he can control it.
    What I'm wondering is what kind of behavior plan I can implement. I'm wondering if a simple sticker chart will work. Has anyone tried this with a child this age? What kind of reward/incentive do you offer with it?
    Also, if it turns out that he can't control his behavior, will the sticker chart even work? He has to be able to control himself to earn the sticker, but what if he really can't? I'm trying to look for positive behavior reinforcement rather than taking free time or recess time away.
    Any words of wisdom??
    Thanks!
     
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  3. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Oct 17, 2011

    IF there are any areas of this child's life where he CAN attend and sit.....I would say that there are less issues with ADHD. Does he go to sport events? Does he play a sport and follow directions? Anything?

    Often when the world is asking the children to do things that are too old for them...the children wiggle. Is your classroom out of his developmental range? Probably not in your states view, or in your view....or even in reality. But sometimes what the child has viewed for themselves really isn't what we have decided will work.

    I would say if he is impulsive enough to be an issue for you....he may not have the "attention" to have delayed gratification for the sticker chart. I assume you praising and praising some more when he IS doing something (anything) right. Correct? I am sure you are.

    I would say increasing motor breaks for everyone will be the thing that helps you most....chose finger rhymes that involve jumping or spinning. Do the bean bag song in circle and work on skeleton body parts.....do anything. Toss shapes into a basket and name them as you go........trace the biggest square you can in the air....not just say the word square. Put a big square of masking tape on the floor and walk around it with bat wings, then float like a ghost, then jump, then tip toe. Just try to get him up.....and everyone with him.
     
  4. christine89

    christine89 Companion

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    Oct 17, 2011

    This child currently lives with his grandparents and when I mention his school behavior to them, it seems very familiar to them and they say that pretty much the same behavior happens at home. So this behavior seems to stretch across other areas of his life and that's part of what makes me lean towards ADD/ADHD. I don't know if he goes to sport events but I know he has difficulty following directions in P.E. class.
    I do believe that my classroom is developmentally appropriate. They are not asked to sit for an extended period of time, it's often just for a short story and then we are up and moving again.
    We do a lot of praising when he is doing things right. However, he seems to need almost constant redirecting.
    Another thing he will do a lot is he will say he's going to put his sweatshirt away and then come back and then he ends up somewhere else in the room.
    Academically, he seems to be picking things up (letters and such). Plus, he seems to be very focused and calm when he's doing something at a table like coloring.
     
  5. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Oct 18, 2011

    See, I knew you were in a developmentally appropriate classroom....great job!

    I would like to point out that you said that he is focused and calm when doing something at the table like coloring. For children I have knows with the ADHD label (including my own son) this is pinnacle example of what they would want to AVOID at all cost. I would say that this is a great thing for that guy to have in his corner. Not that you should add coloring reams of paper to his list of activities....but still a great skill!

    Look more at when he is "lost" and begin to chart when it happens. Even if you can't do it right at the time, try to build a semblance of what went on during the day as soon as you get off as possible. Maybe he has a hard time at transition, maybe when the children are bustling around him it is hard to concentrate....even circle could be that sort of a time.

    Initially look for the most interactive and participatory book you can find and read that during circle.

    If he is with grandparents is it possible he has had a "different childhood" than the rest of the children in the room? Sometimes I find a inability to follow directions at 4 isn't so much a condition as it is a lack of exposure. Right now I have a 4 who can not and will not follow a one step direction, Kinder is in what 9 months? He isn't delayed.....he isn't expected to DO anything. Perhaps even if the grandparents are asking him to do things it is a choice or a negotiation, or they do things for him in the interest of time. Or perhaps.....there isn't anything to do? Many of my parents have to retrained to let the children try to do something.....anything.

    I hope you didn't hear that I was being critical of your day.... I really was assuming that you were doing your job fine and looking for ways to fine tune as it includes this child.
     
  6. teacher36

    teacher36 Comrade

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    Oct 18, 2011

    I just want to note that people with ADHD CAN attend to some tasks. If you have ADHD (whether it be predominantly attention deficit or predominantly hyperactive-impulsive or both), there are tasks that you can focus on for a good length of time. For example, some children with ADHD can actually sit and play a video game for hours!! (not what you want in your classroom, obviously). I am not saying that your child has ADHD, I don't know him at all, but I just wanted to clarify that because he can sit and color, that does not necessarily rule out ADHD.
    I think your best bet is to find out this child's interests and work with those. If you keep things in perspective (how important is it REALLY for him to sit and listen to a story...can he walk around while you read?) it will make your life easier.
    If you implement a behavior modification plan, you really need to choose only one behavior at a time and make it clear to him what you will expect. Also, it has to be an easily attainable goal for him in the beginning. If he is not successful, he will not want to do it. For example, let's say you want him to sit and listen to a story. You will start with "Okay, Joey, if you sit and listen without interrupting for 2 pages today, I will give you a sticker." When he does, have your aide give him the sticker right away. Next time, he can try to sit for 3 pages, etc. Praise Praise and Praise!!
    If he has ADHD, you should know that he probably cannot control his behavior and he is not intentionally breaking the rules. Children with ADHD-impulsivity disorder struggle internally with not making the right choices and then feel guilt over it.
    Good luck, I hope this was helpful!! BTW, I have 4 children in my class of 4 year olds diagnosed with ADHD (out of 20 children) and it is definitely a challenge. But as exhausting as their behavior can be, they are still babies and deserve the same chance to succeed as the rest of them. You are on the right track by wanting to help him!!
     

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