Presentation on theme: "Positive And Negative Reinforcers For Your Child Psychology 121."— Presentation transcript:
Positive And Negative Reinforcers For Your Child Psychology 121
Positive Reinforcers Strengthens a behavior because a positive condition is introduced or experienced as a consequence of the behavior.
Negative Reinforcer Strengthens a behavior because a negative condition is stopped or avoided as a consequence of the behavior.
Punishment Weakens a behavior because a negative condition is introduced or experienced as a consequence of the behavior.
Reinforcements (Adult Examples) What happens first? What then happens? Learning/ Likely result Positive Reinforcement Behavior (desirable) (e.g., washing wife’s car) Pleasant consequences (e.g., a reward) (e.g., wife smiles) Behavior more likely to be repeated Punishment Behavior (undesirable) (e.g., commiting adultery) Adverse consequence (e.g., loss, painful experience) (e.g., divorce) Behavior less likely to be repeated Negative Reinforcement Unpleasant stimulus or situation (e.g., hunger) Desirable behavior (e.g., eating food) Unpleasant situation goes away or is reduced in apparent severity
What is it? A child eats a candy bar and experiences a good taste. This is Positive Reinforcement: a desirable behavior is followed by a pleasant consequence. But what happens if that candy bar was eaten because of hunger? This then turns into Negative Reinforcement: an unpleasant situation was followed by a desirable behavior which made the unpleasant situation go away.
What is it? Your child hits another child while playing. Your child must take a 10 minute time-out. An undesirable behavior is followed by an adverse consequence: this is a punishment. But your child knows that if he/she sits still and doesn’t cry or complain, you will let them out five minutes early… This is a negative reinforcement: an unpleasant situation is followed by a desired behavior which makes the unpleasant situation go away.
What is it? Your child gets a star on his behavior chart for the day (meaning he didn’t misbehave at all for the day) and you give him 30 minutes extra TV time. This is a positive reinforcement: a desired behavior is followed by a pleasant consequence. But your child also knows that if you would have got one more phone call from his teacher while you were at work, he was grounded for a week… The unpleasant situation was followed by a desirable behavior which made the unpleasant situation go away: this is a negative reinforcement.
Wrong Use of Reinforcement Your child cries, “I can’t do it” and you promise to buy him a toy if he tries. Instead of rewarding your child for trying, you are actually reinforcing the solicitation of toys. So next time your child cries, “I can’t do it,” he or she may be expecting a toy in return.
Wrong Use of Reinforcement Rewarding vs. Bribing Use rewards when you feel your child has completed a difficult task, such as making the honor roll at school. This does not mean offering them gifts, money, or treats for tasks you expect your child to do on a daily basis.
Variable Schedule of Reinforcement After your child’s desirable behavior becomes habitual, switch to this type of reinforcement. This is a reward that is completely random. Your child will want the “surprise” reward so they will continue the behavior. You no longer have to reward every time the behavior occurs though.
Things To Try At Home Face your child and maintain eye contact. Always allow your child to finish talking and complete his/her statements. “Labeling is disabling” – label the behavior instead of the child. Incorrect: “Billy, you are a bad boy.” Correct: “Billy, it is irresponsible to leave your toys all over the place.” Help your child learn to talk positively. Try to start your statements with a reinforcer, such as, “Sara, you are a very bright girl; now, let’s talk about the best way to get your homework finished.” People are more responsive to positive statements, but make sure your compliments are truthful. Children, as well as adults, will see through false flattery.
Things To Try At Home Be firm and consistent. Give your child chores starting when they’re young. Chores build self- discipline and a sense of responsibility, but remember that he/she may need many calm reminders to complete them. Accept the fact that children need to be told things over and over. If you have to repeat a direction, say it as if it were the first time. A short list of chores is better than a long, possibly confusing or frustrating, list. In general, lists (in either words or pictures) are better than simply telling your child what to do because a list addresses two learning styles – auditory and visual – and a list lets your child be in control by checking off each task as he/she completes it. Remember that some kids do not process multiple requests quickly or accurately. Get your child’s attention first, and never shout from one room to the other. Speak slowly; it will help your child absorb more of what you are saying.