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Dealing With Escalating Behavior in the School Setting School-Wide Positive Behavior Supports Training Northwest AEA January 14, 2010 Jerome Schaefer

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Presentation on theme: "Dealing With Escalating Behavior in the School Setting School-Wide Positive Behavior Supports Training Northwest AEA January 14, 2010 Jerome Schaefer"— Presentation transcript:

1 Dealing With Escalating Behavior in the School Setting School-Wide Positive Behavior Supports Training Northwest AEA January 14, 2010 Jerome Schaefer

2 PURPOSE Enhance our understanding of and ways of responding to escalating behavior.

3 ASSUMPTIONS Behavior is learned (function). Behavior is escalated through successive interactions. Escalating behavior can be prevented. Behavior can be changed through an instructional approach.

4 Primary Prevention: School-wide/Classroom/ Non-classroom Systems for All Students, Staff, & Settings Secondary Prevention: Targeted Systems for Students with At-Risk Behavior Tertiary Prevention: Individualized Systems for Students with High-Risk Behavior ~80% of Students ~15% ~5% CONTINUUM OF SCHOOL-WIDE POSITIVE BEHAVIOR SUPPORT What Do We Know About Tertiary Interventions?

5 Functions Pos ReinfNeg Reinf

6 OUTCOMES Identification of the stages of escalation. Identification of intervention strategies and adult behaviors to be used at the various stages of escalation. Identification of the key strategies to be used when confronting escalating behaviors.

7 Shane

8 TeacherJason Jason, please turn in your assignment. What assignment? I finished it. I don’t have it with me now. You never believe me. F_____ you! Pulls away, glares, & raises fist as if to strike. The assignment you didn’t finish during class. Great, please turn it in now. You have a choice…..turn it in or do it again. I guess you’ve made the choice to do it again. That’s disrespect…go to the office. Moves closer…& puts hand on J. shoulder. Make me. Share your experiences

9 The MODEL High Low Calm Peak De-escalation Recovery Acceleration Agitation Trigger

10 The MODEL High Low CALM 

11 1. Calm Student is cooperative. –Accepts corrective feedback. –Follows directives. –Sets personal goals. –Ignores distractions. –Accepts praise. –Reasoning and compromising skills are at their highest

12 Interventions/Adult Behaviors Focus on teaching, and prevention Assessing probable triggers, functions, skill deficits High rates of successful academic and social experiences High rates of positive reinforcement Teach social skills Communicating positive expectations Consider your own emotional and physiological state Consider your relationship with the individual Consider the student’s emotional state

13 The MODEL High Low TRIGGER 

14 2. Trigger Student experiences a series of unresolved conflicts. –Repeated failures –Frequent corrections from adults and/or peers –Interpersonal conflicts with adults and/or peers –Low rates of positive reinforcement –Student showing signs of frustration or distress –Triggers are most often environmental (can be internal) –Reasoning and compromising skills still in tact

15 Interventions/Adult Behaviors Focused on prevention and redirection Consider function of problem behavior when responding Remove or modify problem events (eliminating triggers) Reinforce what you have taught (pre- correct) Stay calm with your words and your body Soft tone of voice Using the student’s name Actively listen Determine whether ignoring is appropriate

16 Sarah


18 3. Agitation Student exhibits increase in unfocused behavior. –Off-task –Very brief periods of focused working –Signs of frustration and distress are clearly evident –Out of seat –Talking with others –Social withdrawal/isolation –Reasoning and compromising skills under attack

19 Interventions/Adult Behaviors Intervention is focused on being proactive Consider function of problem behaviors when responding Redirect to less agitating activities (environmental modifications) Provide reasonable options and choices Remind about options through limited problem solving Don’t ignore it Don’t try to attempt teaching of new skills, rather reinforce skills they use and remind of the skills they have Stay calm

20 Sarah


22 4. Acceleration Student displays focused behavior. –Provocative –High intensity –Threatening –Personal –Significant decrease in reasoning and compromising skills –Use of the language of fear (obscenities) –Talking louder and faster –Quick movements –Less self-control

23 Interventions/Adult Behaviors Intervention is focused on safety Remove all triggers Disengage from the student (especially if you are a part of the escalation) Prevent power struggles and arguments Choose your physical placement carefully Stay calm Remind of options but not as “either/or” Prepare for being personally attacked Bring in another adult to assist Don’t rush the child to return to the calm phase

24 What did this guy to wrong?

25 The MODEL High Low PEAK

26 5. Peak Student is out of control & displays most severe problem behavior. –Verbal aggression –Physical aggression –Property destruction –Self-injury –Escape/social withdrawal –Hyperventilation –No reasoning or compromising skills

27 Remember this guy…

28 Interventions/Adult Behaviors Interventions are focused on safety of the student, other students, and adults Remain calm Careful body positioning (stay out of reach) Carefully choose words Communicate understanding (empathy) Remove other students Use diversions and distractions Follow the crisis intervention plan –Involve other staff members –Use of physical interventions as necessary (Mandt training or similar training may be necessary)

29 The MODEL High Low De-escalation

30 6. De-escalation Student displays confusion but with decreases in severe behavior. –Social withdrawal –Denial –Blaming others –Minimization of problem –Still not using good reasoning or compromising skills –Could quickly return to peak

31 Interventions/Adult Behaviors Focus is on removing access attention Don’t nag Don’t blame Don’t force or even assume the student will apologize Provide structure (structured cooling off) Take your time – don’t rush it Be careful not to re- escalate by focusing on consequences at this time Don’t try to teach Provide choices and/or reminders of choices Allow the student to direct their progress

32 The MODEL High Low RECOVERY 

33 7. Recovery Student displays eagerness to engage in activities. –Attempts to correct problem. –Unwillingness to participate in group activities. –Social withdrawal –Emotional and physically drained (sleep) –Reasoning and compromising skills return but not fully –Some capacity of self-control returns

34 Interventions/Adult Behaviors Focus is on debriefing and transitioning back Use of humor if appropriate Positively reinforce displays of appropriate behavior Begin to reestablish routine activities Active listening Don’t require apologies Provide your own apologies and/or clarifications if needed Focus on the present Don’t expect remorse or concern

35 Post-Recovery (sometime later) Teach through problem solving example: –What did I do? –Why did I do it? –What could I have done instead? –What do I have to do next? –Can I do it? –Love and Logic Procedure

36 The MODEL High Low Calm Peak De-escalation Recovery Acceleration Agitation Trigger

37 KEY STRATEGIES Teach coping skills prior to escalating incidents or at post-recovery time. Look for replacement behaviors that can be taught & serve similar function. Manage your own behavior. Identify environmental factors that can be manipulated to prevent escalating behaviors. Don’t hurry or attempt to force students through phases of escalation. Develop and follow crisis intervention plans to deal with the Peak phase of escalation. Follow-up sometime after the incident with the student problem solve and teach ways to better deal with their behavior.

38 Sources Power Point Presentation - School Wide Positive Behavioral Supports Training (Colvin and Sugai, 1989) The Mandt System: Putting People First (David Mandt and Associates, April, 2002)

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