Ms. Dawson’s second year of teaching.
Setting the Scene: It is Ms. Dawson’s second year of teaching. Things have gone fairly well during the first few weeks of the school year. She encountered only sporadic behavior issues and was able to deal with them with minimal disruptions. Recently, a new student, Devin, joined the class. Devin often teases his classmates and, occasionally, becomes physically aggressive toward them. Devin frequently makes rude comments while Ms. Dawson is teaching. Ms. Dawson tries to ignore much of this behavior, but occasionally argues with Devin when frustration sets in. The other students often laugh at Devin’s behavior, and when Ms. Dawson asks him to leave the classroom, he often refuses. Ms. Dawson has found herself admonishing Devin more and more and has noticed that other students, who were previously compliant, have begun to engage in the same behavior. Ms. Dawson is not happy about the atmosphere that Devin is creating in her classroom. She has tried some of the behavior interventions she learned last year, but they are not working. She wonders what else she can do to stop Devin’s behavior. PROPOSED INTERVENTION PLAN So looking at the disruptive behavior itself and also Ms Dawson’s attempts to ignore Devin’s behavior, it’s safe to say that the function of the behavior is attention seeking behavior. Devin doesn’t get a rise from the teacher however he does get a reaction from the other students which emboldens his behavior. Ms Dawson’s attempts at admonishing Devin simply didn’t work because he could get the attention he sought from the other students, and her attempts at ignoring him were negated by the reactions of Devin’s classmates. As far as direct assessments that can be done by Ms Dawson, she can observe and see if there are specific students that Devin is trying to rile up. If Devin has friends that sit near him, possibly rearranging the seating chart could keep Devin far enough away that he won’t be able to get their attention. Ms Dawson could also talk to Devin’s classmates and see how the disruptions make them feel and then have a talk with Devin and explain that while they laugh in the moment, that they don’t enjoy the disruptions. Ultimately a reinforcer needs to be added to motivate Devin more than the attention he receives from his classmates. A token economy is a tried and true method. NOW : Next, illustrate a unique (different behavior intervention plan than proposed above) function-based BIP for the correct function of the target behavior