We’ve all been there. The student with a behavior we all need to place on planned ignoring… and the kind-hearted and well-meaning staff who intervene with “Just stand up!” or “What’s going on there?”.
Remember: Each behavior serves at least one of these functions: Sensory, Escape, Tangible, Attention-Seeking. And for attention-seeking behaviors, negative attention can be just as reinforcing, if not more, than positive attention
So what do I do?
For many attention-seeking behaviors, a Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP) may ask staff to ignore the behavior. That means nada, nothing, you gotta go into “robot mode.”
But imagine this:
My student, “Johnny” is engaging in an attention-seeking behavior.
I am at a table, student safely within my line of sight, ignoring the Johnny’s behavior.
Then, one of my IAs comes back from lunch and goes “Hey Johnny! What’s up?” *Gives high five*
…and I start to pull my hair out……just kidding.
Now, check this out!
****In my classroom, because we have so many wonderful staff, nurses, therapists, popping in and out throughout the day, we will flash this “Ignoring” visual to each other. We are all on the same page now that this means the student is engaging in a behavior and we are not to engage. Since we started using this, thus leading the entire team to follow the BIP with fidelity, the behavior decreased. YAY!!!!!