Positive Reinforcement Case Study


ECE 201: Intro to Early Childhood Behavior Management (ACP1224A)



I think the best strategy to address Doug’s goals is choice making is a strategy that enable a student to select from a number of options it can prevent problems or it can increase specific behaviors. This would be the best because a student’s choice always affects his or her work and the way he may feel about himself Doug must stay focused and choose to do the work when told to so he can complete what need to be done for him to move to the next level. He must take his time but also get the work done in a timely matter he’s only with that teacher for 8 hours and calm down when he is doing his assignments them he can focuses. Include choices that are also conducive to the teaching style and classroom environment. Don’t include options you can’t live with or that will disrupt learning in the classroom. Begin a consistent choice-making program in one or two academic areas, then extend to other areas. I would Select an academic area or task that is likely to have the biggest effect on the Doug success.

Some choice is better than no choice. Positive behavior can be increased by giving students a choice, even if the options aren’t preferred (Dunlap et al., 1994). Avoid negotiations. Students may pressure teachers to add options on the spot. Consider the suggested options for future choice-making situations. Be consistent and honor the choices. If you do not follow through, this strategy will become ineffective over time.

Cosden, M., Gannon, C., & Haring, T. G. (1995). Teacher-control versus student-control over choice With some children, positive reinforcement seems to have exactly the wrong effect. At the first kind word, they throw books on the floor or kick the nearest person.

Because he doesn’t succeed frequently, he doesn’t experience the good feelings and natural reinforcements that come along with success. The teachers should notice he’s acting appropriately; they are so reluctant to rock the boat that they withdraw from the scene. On the other hand, they have eyes in the back of their heads when it comes to inappropriate behavior. The result is that most of their interactions with him are negative, and he and his classmates learn that the best way to get attention is to make the teacher angry.

A child with challenging behavior knows exactly what to expect if he punches someone—criticism from adults and rejection from his peers. He has become comfortable with this response and believes he deserves it. Convinced he’s unworthy of positive attention, he dedicates himself to the motto, “If you think I’m bad, why should I be good?”

(Rasminsky 184-185)

Rasminsky, Barbara Kaiser and Judy Sklar. Challenging Behavior in Young Children: Understanding, Preventing and Responding Effectively, 3/e for Ashford University, 3rd Edition. Pearson Learning Solutions. .

Every child does things right some of the time. If you can catch him being good, as the expression goes, and support his efforts at those moments, you will build his strengths, help him replace inappropriate behavior with appropriate behavior, and make him feel good about himself. To avoid overwhelming him, start out with nonverbal positive reinforcement—a smile, a high five, a wink, a nod, a thumbs up. Because each child is different, you must watch carefully to see what he likes, what he’s good at, what works as a reinforce for him, then offer him activities you know he enjoys, books and materials that interest him, assignments he can complete if he tries. Create positive moments with him, doing something he chooses himself, letting him be in charge, and telling him that you like talking and being with him. Sit beside him or join his activity, share jokes, ask questions about his family, his pet, his culture, and what he likes to do outside of school. Ask him to help you or another child with a task, offer to help him with one, teach him a new skill. Show appreciation for his contributions to the group, his sense of humor, or his sensitivity. Include other children when you can. Gradually you will increase his comfort zone and accustom him to feeling better about him and less anxious when he is behaving appropriately.

(Rasminsky 185-186)

Rasminsky, Barbara Kaiser and Judy Sklar.


Cosden, M., Gannon, C., & Haring, T. G. (1995).

Rasminsky, Barbara Kaiser and Judy Sklar. Challenging Behavior in Young Children: Understanding, Preventing and Responding Effectively, 3/e for Ashford University, 3rd Edition.

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