B E H A V I O R D I S O R
D E R S
Major Concern #1
Children will behave aggressively towards others.
Teaching children that physical activity and play are an
opportunity to enjoy the company of others is important. Avoiding competitive
play or situations where only one winner exists is important. Having games
where the goal is to work cooperatively helps kids understand team goals. The
parachute suggestion earlier in the Attention Deficit section is relevant here
too. Also keep in mind that children behave in challenging ways as a means of
trying to fulfill their own needs. Learn the concept of Functional Behavior
Assessment and use this technique to find out what is causing the poor
behavior. It may be that the playground where your child is hitting is too
stimulating or scary to your child. Children with not learn to play with others
unless they practice, however, early on parents need to try and problem in
situations where children act out. For more on functional behavior assessment
see the resource page.
Major Concern #2
Children will act inappropriately and embarrass me as a parent
if I take them to the pool or the playground.
Get used to it. Even children without severe behavior problems
act out and refuse to listen to their parents in public. It is wise to consider
that unless children get out in physical activity settings and see other kids
playing, they will not learn appropriate behavior. Set goals for outings where
the child is rewarded for small successes. Gage success for your child by
improvement, rather than the child conforming to some ideal standard. Know
ahead of time what you will do if the child refuses to follow your directions.
Plan ahead so you are not caught off guard. If your child has trouble leaving
the playground, then work on shortening the transition time. It is better to
get behavior under control when children are young and more manageable than to
avoid situations all together. In the end, all children have to learn basic
behaviors. Rewarding appropriate behavior insures that it will be repeated.