Wednesday, March 24, 2010

BIG REACTIONS for what I want!

Learned via SonRise and recently re-learned via Jonathan Levy's brilliant book "10 things you can do right now for your child with autism":

Big reactions work out to a reward. Big reactions to negative stuff, and big reactions to positive stuff--they almost always cause a repeat of the behavior. So why were we trained to react BIG negatively to stuff we don't like our kids doing, and only react moderately positively to stuff we do like?

Tonite I heard via channels that one of my lovely girlikins had been pushing other children at school this term. She had mentioned a couple weeks ago that she sometimes pushed people even though she didn't want to--she felt she couldn't help it. I failed to stop and have a talk with her about it then. So tonite I asked "So, lovely little one, remember how you said you had been having trouble with pushing people and not being able to stop? Would you like to have a talk to see if we can help you find a way to stop?"

And she said, with a big delighted grin, "Oh! I've stopped! I tried and tried really hard and now I don't push people anymore!"

I figured it was time for a BIG reaction. So I made my facial expression BIG, and my voice BIG, and my body movements BIG, and I picked her up and squeezed her and said in my BIG voice "HOORAY!!!!! YOU ARE AMAZING AND AWESOME.". Then I started shaking my body all over, and scrunching up my face. She was looking at me a little wonderingly and curiously. I said "I'M SO PROUD AND PLEASED WITH YOU I'M ABOUT TO BURST BURST BURST WITH AMAZING JOY! HURRAH!!!!!!! I LOVE IT THAT YOU WERE ABLE TO STOP PUSHING PEOPLE. WAY TO GO!!!!"

She loved all this. Here's to BIG reactions to get more of what I want. Thank you, Bears, Samarhia, Tracey, Saeid, Jack, Kim, Kate, Caroline, William, Avak, Anita, Shelley, (WOW THIS LIST COULD GO ON AND ON!) all you super amazing beautiful SonRise people in my life. YOU ROCK ROCK ROCK ROCK ROCK!!!!!

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