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How to Create an Effective Behavior Management Plan

Whether your child has been hitting someone at school lately or they have been refusing to brush their teeth, you need a solid plan to address behavior problems. A good behavior management plan will ensure that you and all of your child’s other caregivers respond to behavior problems in a consistent manner.

Here are five steps that will help you create a behavior management plan that will change your child’s behavior.

Identify Problem Behaviors
Before you start addressing your child’s behavioral problems, it’s important to clearly identify which behaviors are the most problematic. Be sure to describe the specific behavior you want to change. For example, a problem behavior might be, “Johnny screams whenever he’s told to do something he doesn’t want to do.” You might pick the ones that are the most disruptive or the ones that are causing the biggest problems.

Pick Effective Discipline Tools
There are many different discipline strategies that can be used to address the same behavior. The type of discipline strategy that will be most effective depends on your circumstances. While one child may respond well to getting their favorite toy taken away for the day, another child may respond best to a time-out. It’s also important to implement positive reinforcement for good behavior.

Write Down the Plan
Writing down your plan will increase the chances that you’ll follow through. It also will ensure that you’re prepared to deal with behavior problems when they arise. Outline how you’ll reinforce good behavior.

For example, your plan might be to praise your child’s healthy choices every time they play nicely with their friend. Then, decide how you’ll respond when they exhibit the problem behavior you’re working on, such as using a brief time-out each time they kick or hi

Review the Plan With Caregivers
When all of a child’s caregivers follow the same discipline plan, behavior change is likely to occur much faster. Try to get teachers, daycare providers, grandparents, non-custodial parents, and any other adults who play a large role in your child’s life on board.

Revisit the plan as needed. When your child’s behavior improves, you may want to pick another behavior to address.

If your child’s behavior isn’t responding well to the plan, change your strategy. Try different consequences or work on teaching your child new skills. A fresh approach may help put an end to stubborn misbehavior.

Anticipate Positive Results
When implementing a behavior modification plan, make sure to keep a positive attitude and to anticipate being successful. While it’s inevitable that you will need to fine tune and adjust the plan as you go along, it’s important that you expect to see the results you hope for.

If you start to feel overwhelmed or if you’re ready to give up on the plan, seek outside support. Talk to your child’s pediatrician, a therapist, or get a parent coach or mentor to help you through the rough patches.

Excerpted from “How to Create an Effective Behavior Management Plan” written by Amy Morin. Read the full article on VeryWellFamily.

Source: VeryWellFamily | How to Create an Effective Behavior Management Plan, https://www.verywellfamily.com/behavior-management-plan-1094830 | Ⓒ 2021 About, Inc. (Dotdash)

If you have concerns about your child or teen, CHC Care Coordinators can arrange a free 30-minute consultation so you can explore options with an expert. We invite you to call or email us at 650.688.3625 or careteam@chconline.org to set up an initial Parent Consultation appointment. CHC teletherapy services are available now.

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