Addressing Challenging Behavior - Part 7
Glad you have returned to continue the process. Chris is with you today. So how are you feeling about this process? Tired? Anxious to implement? Wishing it did not take so long? Course you are. Teams committed to supporting individuals to change behavior are often people of action. This planning stuff can seem so tedious.
However, please understand, once you learn the process and embed this way of thinking into your daily practices, this will not seem so complex or so time consuming. But right now, while you are learning, it can seem endless. Stick with it a little while longer, and I believe you will appreciate the results. Over time, this practice will just be the way you operate and not something additional. So let's get back to it. By this time in the series, you know that you need to have completed Webcasts One through Six before beginning Webcast Seven.
Today we will focus on identifying strengths. If you need some processing time, just click the pause button. If you choose to work through the process with your own individual, since the last webinar, you updated Section One with new information. And you answered the questions on the Why Worksheet to figure out the function of behavior. And you summarized the Why Worksheet in Section Two.
In this part of the presentation, we are talking about strengths, skills, talents, and interests. It's about time, huh? In this webcast, we are looking at areas of strength to help complete the iceberg. It will also set us up to talk about completing the positive behavior support plan. Strengths need to be the foundation of building new skills.
To identify strengths, we can focus on the interest and positive attributes about an individual. What is he/she like when working? When their calm? While they're socializing? When they're engaged? When they're passionate about an activity? Basically, what is going on when the person is showing the type of behavior that is desired?
Sometimes when we are dealing with challenging behaviors, it can be difficult to identify the strengths and positive interest of a person. We get so caught up in the negatives of the behavior, we sometimes forget about the whole person and that person's preferences, their interests, their skills, or their strengths. Having conversation with school staff, family members, employers, peers, and caregivers about the interest and strengths can help develop a comprehensive profile that includes this valuable information about the person.
Here are categories to consider. Strengths, what the person can already do. Preferences, where and when the person is most comfortable. And interest, what does the person choose to do that excites and motivates him or her. Because it is sometimes a challenge for teams to identify a comprehensive list of strengths, we have developed some areas to be considered by the team. You may not come up with something for each area, but this can get you started.
Here is an example of strengths for this little guy, Cesar. In the communication area, he is able to make choices. In academics, he just loves math. Physically, he's a great runner. Personality-wise, he is liked by most of his peers. In self care, he has some dressing skills. In sensory area, he knows when he needs a break. And as a motivator, he loves music. In social competence, he works well with two of his peers especially.
Now remember Molly? Here is her strengths profile. She is cute, has large motor skills, finds a way to get her point across, regardless, likes hands-on math activities, can be engaging, loves music and playground time, can work alone sometimes, and she does know when she is overwhelmed. She is persistent, and she can interact best one on one. At this time, we are not sure about her coping skills.
You may not be able to identify something for each area, and that's just fine. Also, when you look at the blank strengths form in your downloadable file, you will notice we left some spaces without titles for adding your own categories and strengths. Again, this can be part of the ongoing thought process that you can keep adding to about your individual.
Why do we take the time in this functional assessment process to consider strengths and skills? How is this really going to help Molly? If we discover what intrinsically motivates Molly, what makes her excited, what gets her interest bubbling, then we can use that information within the interventions and strategies we choose to support and change the challenging behavior. This can work for your individual, too.
On the screen, you can see that the next step on this form is to fill in Section Three with a summary of strengths and skills under these categories. This form shows a summary of Molly strengths in Section Three. For instance, she learns best if music is incorporated, and she likes being able to make a choice. This information will help us support her in a positive way with matching strategies. More on that shortly.
If you are practicing the process with an individual, complete the strength chart. And summarize your individual strengths in Section Three of this form. If you are having a difficult time thinking of strengths, remember to ask others who support the individual for ideas. Forms are in the downloadable file, as always. Thank you for attending today. Wendy will see soon for Webcast Eight.
Examine missing skills that might need to be taught for behavioral success. You are continuing to gather information that will lead to a comprehensive intervention plan.