Getting Your Child’s Behavior in Shape at Home Using Positive Behavior Support (PBS)
Brief Introduction: Positive Behavior Support (PBS) is an approach for developing an understanding of why a child is using challenging behavior. Positive behavior support does not mean changing the child. Rather, it means creating a new environment that supports the positive behavior you want to achieve. It means creating a plan that determines who will help and what you will do differently. PBS was developed initially as an alternative to aversive interventions that were used with students with severe disabilities who engaged in extreme forms of self-injury and aggression. However, these ideas and the philosophy of PBS has now been applied successfully with a wide range of students, in a wide range of contexts, and extended from an intervention approach for individual students to an intervention approach for entire schools. Through you may have heard about PBS at your child’s school, PBS is not just for use at school. Parents can use the same ideas to create a better environment for the entire family. Using PBS at home involves (1.) deciding what behavior you want to change; (2.) developing a theory about why you think the behavior is occurring; (3.) deciding how you want that behavior to change (what your expectations are and what success will “look like”); (4.) using all of this information to select supports that have been proven to work (such as teaching new skills to get the same results, changing environments and daily routines, and rewarding positive behaviors); and (5.) consistently implementing the supports you have selected. The following article includes tips that can help parents use these kinds of positive behavioral support techniques with their children at home.