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Is this rewarding good behaviour or a terrible idea?

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Is this rewarding good behaviour or a terrible idea?

Postby rej on Mon Oct 14, 2013 11:33 am

I'll try to keep this short... my 7 yr old has some behavioural problems, and while we have gotten a handle on most of them, he is still hitting my partner's two kids. He isn't doing this at school or at his dad's house, or even at my house when the other two kids aren't there.

Everything I've read has said reward first before using punishment, so thinking along those lines, I came up with a plan to give him a small reward every time he successfully gets through a visit or weekend with the other two kids without using any hands on behaviour.

But now I'm questioning myself, is this behavior modification? Or is this ridiculous? Is rewarding one child for not hitting other children a poor parenting choice? Not hitting is expected behaviour and I can't tell if I'm going to make this better with this plan or just feed into bad behaviour and make things worse...

Help!!
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Re: Is this rewarding good behaviour or a terrible idea?

Postby Victoria Family Meals on Mon Oct 14, 2013 12:07 pm

It behavior modification.

Think along the lines that Guidance and Discipline are individually based and what one child needs could be different that another child. It isn't necessarily about fairness but individual success.

You can also make the reward a group one. If you son has a successful visit then everyone get ie: movie and popcorn. This will also help get everyone on board to encourage positive behavior and you get a positive family activity as the reward.


I think it's also important to understand the why and working on solving that too. The root of the problem will need to be dealt with to ultimately solve the issue.

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Re: Is this rewarding good behaviour or a terrible idea?

Postby StitchedUp on Mon Oct 14, 2013 12:26 pm

^I agree!
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Re: Is this rewarding good behaviour or a terrible idea?

Postby rej on Mon Oct 14, 2013 12:51 pm

Thank you!! I love the idea of including everyone in it and think it could be a very positive thing for all of us!

I agree, the underlying issues need to be addressed, and we are working on that. It's such a work in progress with so many big feelings!!

Thanks for the feedback!
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Re: Is this rewarding good behaviour or a terrible idea?

Postby TazDevil on Mon Oct 14, 2013 2:21 pm

Kids misbehave for attention at a rule (there are exceptions though). If you give them negative attention (punishment, yelling etc) it reinforces the bad behaviour because bad attention is better than no attention.

If you give them positive attention for positive behaviour and use removal technique without negative attention for bad behaviour they will learn that they can get attention for doing good things rather than bad.

Also try and talk to him about his feeling and get him to express them. My DS is 7 and the change in his ability to identify and manage his feelings has improved 10x in the last year since we have been doing identification of feelings like "I am Mad Mad Mad". We have a motto "anger leads to misery" and he gets isolated when he gets angry and then we talk about it when he is calm.

Also the reminder that kids can CHOOSE their behaviours and how they react to their feelings. It is very impowering for them to learn.
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Re: Is this rewarding good behaviour or a terrible idea?

Postby murf1511 on Wed Nov 27, 2013 5:28 pm

The group reward idea is great, and you might offer him some alone time reward with you as well (trip to the park, ice cream, bike ride) and also think about adding a privilege removal if he steps out of line.
In theory, if he has it all laid out that if he behaves appropriately then he gets a fun time while the kids are over, a fun time to look forward to with just mom after and privileged removal if he gets off track, hopefully he will choose wisely.
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Re: Is this rewarding good behaviour or a terrible idea?

Postby VanillaBean on Thu Nov 28, 2013 3:41 pm

I agree, I think you are on the right track. Personally I wouldn't reward with things like toys etc but some good quality time with you or a fun activity with everyone together.

Negative behaviour often comes from a child feeling they don't get enough of any attention, particularly positive attention so they misbehave because bad attention is better than none at all.

Good luck!
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Re: Is this rewarding good behaviour or a terrible idea?

Postby Jube28 -abc on Sat Dec 14, 2013 5:25 pm

Hi, I agree with Vanalilla bean, you are on the right track! I think that is a awesome idea!
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