Behavior analysis (teaching students)

Background Information:
Arielle is a 4th grader at Roosevelt elementary school. She has attention deficit disorder and is currently being taken off her medication due to complication with it. Arielle is having trouble adjusting to life without the medication. She is being forced to control herself instead of relying medication to help her do so. She is having trouble controlling herself and has been in acting out in school with reprimand. The entire situation has been very stressful for her and her family.
she attends the eisnehower youth center The eisnehower Youth Center was recently transitioned from a youth center to an after school program for those parents that live in the Town of pearl or the Village of calem. It has an average to above average population, partly because of the economics of the program –50 dollars a month fee. This Youth Center is open when ever the kids are off school during the school year, including half days, school holidays, and snow days. There is a set schedule in place, from 3 pm – 4 pm that the attendants are helped with homework or do their own homework. The children have time to finish their homework and to color or read while the other children get their homework done. The time frame from 4 pm – 6pm the children break up into groups by age groups, there is a 4,5,6 year old group, a 7 year old group, and 8 year old group and a 9,10,11 year old group.
We begin to make contact with Arielle in the homework room. During this time Arielle has a difficulty keeping on task. This is not the behavior that I am attempting to impact. The behavior that I am trying to impact is Arielle’s habit of yelling out during homework time. She does this in multiple different situations, sometimes trying to manipulate the situation, control the situation or in retaliation to doing work that she does not want to complete. There are a number of underlying reasons that she acts out like this, with both good and bad reasons. I am also her group leader, which gives me more time to observe her actions. This has given me a good understanding what the underlying causes for her outbursts are.

Scope of this Project:
The purpose of this project is to attempt to identify, or hypothesize, why Arielle acts out for a significant amount of time, both in good situations and in bad situations. I have used both the ABA collection method and the interval collection method. I did this for two weeks, from 3pm – 6pm every day. I will show all of the following in this project:
-The behavioral objective
-The rationale for changing behavior
-Data collection
-The current antecedents and antecedent control techniques
-The current consequences
-The hypothesis
Target Behavior:
The target behavior is to help Arielle express her self with out acting out during play, work and conflict.

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Definition of On-task and Off-task Behavior:
The behavior that we want to decrease or eliminate is yelling. We can define on-task behavior as Arielle playing, working, such as doing her homework, and dealing with conflict, such as being disciplined or resolving a problem with another child, without acting out.We can define off-task behavior as the opposite, acting out while playing, working, during conflict.

Behavioral Objectives:
While participating in a group activity, Arielle will not use either screaming or yelling as a way to gain attention, with no more that one oral prompt and only if needed.

Arielle uses acting out as a way to gain attention from the youth center attendants, supervisor, peers. She uses it as a way to be the center of attention, though negative in nature. If the attendants need to focus on Arielle, they cannot divide their attention to help the other children with homework or play with the other children. If the supervisor needs to become involved, he is unable to complete the day-to-day work that is needed to run the youth center adequately and efficiently meeting the needs of all participants. When Arielle uses yelling to gain attention, she distracts her peers, preventing them from completing their homework. This has a negative outcome on all attending the program. If the children are not completing their homework in the time provided and meeting the needs of the attendants and their families, the attendants will need to extend homework time, thus preventing the children from playing the games that they want and having a well balanced after school program.
Data Collection:
Interval Recording ( data attached )
I chose to use the interval recording method, because that I would be a useful way to see how much Arielle uses acting out during a day at the youth center. During this time I accurately recorded the situation, and time of day that she acted out. This identified if she was doing so while having fun or if it were a conflict of some sort. I used intervals of 15 minutes because I believed that it was short enough that it can encase a time period of where she was acting out yet long enough to identify if she was acting in a manner that was positive for her and her peers.
Over all, during the week of March 25,2005 to March 29, 2005 Arielle was acting out 44.6% of the time. This may be a high estimate because of my long time intervals, but it is a good reflection of the situation. I have identified why it is important to use a shorter interval, though I still believe that these statistics are valid and accurate. This statistic may also be abnormally high due to the fact that this was the week before the children’s spring break and the anticipation may have exacerbated the acting out.

Arielle would act appropriately; using on-task behavior, during the first half of homework time, but after that she began to act out more after her homework was done. She also argued over playing video games many times and for long periods of time. These video games seem to have high value to her; this is an opportunity to use these as reinforcement when I try to alter her behavior.

The Data Collected:
Summary sheet
Week Off-task – 44.6%
Week On-task – 55.4%
Monday March 25, 2005
Off-task – 46.2%
On-task – 53.8%
Tuesday March 26, 2005
Off-task – 53.8%
On-task – 46.2%
Wednesday March 27, 2005
Off-task – 38.5%
On-task – 61.5%
Thursday March 28, 2005
Off-task – 46.2%
On-task – 53.8%
Friday March 29, 2005
Off-task – 38.5%
On-task – 61.5%
Off task behaviors most exhibited:
-Fighting over video games
-Arguing with attendants over decisions they made
-Arguing with friends
-Being far too loud while plying Super Shotz Hockey
-Arguing with her Mom whether it was time to go or not
very inportant – key
On-task – acting out, even if being diciplined, if she is not
Acting out I consider it to be on task
Off-task – acting out, even if she is playing, it is an indoor facility
and yelling is inappropriate
March 25,2005
3:00 PMon doing homework
3:15 PMondoing homework
3:30 PMoffrunning around chasing Brandyn avoiding homework
3:45 PMoffbeing diciplined for running in homework room by attendant
4:00 PMongoing to the lounge
4:15 PMofffighting over playing PS2
4:30 PMoffarguing with staff about who’s turn it is to play
4:45 PMonsitting waiting for turn to play
5:00 PMonplaying PS2
5:15 PMoffrunning around
5:30 PMongoing to the pool room
5:45 PMonplaying pool
6:00 PMoffarguing with mother about it being time to leave
March 26,2005
3:00 PMofffighting with Gabby
3:15 PMonsitting in chair away from the rest of the group/ cooling down
3:30 PMon doing homework
3:45 PMondoing homework
4:00 PMongoing to pool room
4:15 PMoffthrowing pool ball around table
4:30 PMofffighting with Gabby
4:45 PMoffarguing with attendant about who started the fight
5:00 PMoffarguing with supervisor about the fight
5:15 PMongoing to the game room
5:30 PMoffplaying super shotz hockey, yelling
5:45 PMonplaying N64
6:00 PMoffarguing with mother about staying at the youth center
March 27,2005
3:00 PMonplaying nicely with Anthony
3:15 PMondoing homework
3:30 PMondoing homework
3:45 PMonplaying nicely with Anthony
4:00 PMongoing to the lounge
4:15 PMofffighting over PS2
4:30 PMonplaying PS2
4:45 PMoffarguing about changing rooms
5:00 PMongoing to the game room
5:15 PMonplaying super shotz hockey, not yelling
5:30 PMofffighting over N64
5:45 PMoffstealing controller from Gabby and fighting
6:00 PMoffdiciplined until mother picks her up
March 28,2005
3:00 PMofffighting with Brandyn
3:15 PMofffighting with Brandyn
3:30 PMoffarguing with attendant over who started the fight
3:45 PMoffarguing with supervisor over why she is being diciplined
4:00 PMongoing into the lounge
4:15 PMofffighting over why she cant play the PS2 today
4:30 PMoffstill fighting over why she cant play the PS2 today
4:45 PMoncalming down/playing on the computers
5:00 PMondoing homework with attendant
5:15 PMondoing homework with attendant
5:30 PMonplaying on the computer
5:45 PMonplaying on the computer
6:00 PMongetting ready to leave
March 29,2005
3:00 PMoffrunning around the homework room yelling
3:15 PMoffplaying loudly with Brandyn / avoiding homework
3:30 PMonStarting to do homework
3:45 PMonHomework
4:00 PMongoing to game room
4:15 PMonplaying PS1
4:30 PMoffarguing over why she has to let others play
4:45 PMoffarguing over when she gets to play N64
5:00 PMonsitting with the supervisor as a form of discipline
5:15 PMonsitting with the supervisor as a form of discipline
5:30 PMongoing back to game room / asking nicely if she can play N64
5:45 PMonplaying N64
6:00 PMoffarguing with mother about it being time to leave
Summary: I made a decision to do my ABC assessment on March 14, 2005. This decision was based on the fact that t this would act as a good norm day, one that was far enough away from spring break that the children had not begun to think about it yet. I am doing this from 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm. This is the homework time.
ABC Recording From
Student: Arielle ###### Time: 3:00pm-4:00pm
Setting: KYC homework room Working: Melissa, Amy, Key ligh, Kellie
-Boredom sets in-Begins to chase Brandyn -Reprimanded, asked if
around the room and she has any homework
yelling at him
-Kayla sits next to-Begins to talk to Kayla -Is distracted from
Arielle homework
-Attendant sees Arielle-Arielle pretends to do-Arielle is left alone
not doing her homeworkhomework
-does not understand the-starts to pick a fight-asked to sit next to one
math homeworkwith Gabby (yelling)of the attendants
-asked to sit next to one of-begins to yell at the-is sent to talk with the
the attendants attendantsupervisor
-sent to talk to the supervisor -argues that is wasn’t-told that she is not
her fault (begins to yell)aloud to play
videogames until her
homework is done
– told that she is not aloud to -begins to do homework-is aloud to sit back with
play videogames until her her friends
homework is done
-Kayla begins to talk to -Arielle yell at her to-Arielle is asked not to
Arielle “shut up”use that word
-Arielle is asked not to say -Arielle feels as though-begins to argue with the
shut upshe is be picked onattendant again
-Arielle begins to argue with -Arielle is sent back out-Arielle is told that she
the attendant againto see the supervisoris not aloud to play any
video games today
-Arielle is told that she is -begins to argue with the-Arielle begins to yell at
not aloud to play any video supervisorthe supervisor
game today
-Arielle begins to yell at the-the supervisor explains-Arielle begins to calm
supervisorto Arielle that she is notdown
in trouble for saying
“shut up”, but for
yelling at the attendants
-Arielle begins to calm down -she understands why-apologizes to the
she was beingattendant for
-time to break up into groups-Arielle puts her books-she goes with her group
awayto the next room
Current Antecedents and Antecedent Control Technique:
Current Antecedent: Lack of specific physical arrangement
There is no specific seating arrangement, so Arielle tends to sit next to those who
she can cause trouble with.

Antecedent Control Technique:
Place Arielle away from those that she is being known to cause trouble with
Current Antecedent: Lack of posted rules
There are no posted rules around the homework room, thus she has nothing to reinforce what rules she is to follow.

Antecedent Control Technique:
Reinforce the rules that are to be followed when Arielle is not following them. Also, posted the rules, to help reinforce all the children’s following of the rules.

Current Antecedent: Environment
In the homework room, there is a hectic environment, between those who are doing their homework and those who are done and talking with their neighbor. This tends to get Arielle over-excited and she want to talk and play with the other.
Antecedent Control Technique:
Take Arielle out of the room if she begins to lose control.

Current Antecedent: Seeking attention from staff
Arielle loves to gain attention from the staff, she will use getting in trouble as a way to gain this attention.
Antecedent Control Technique:
Give Arielle praise and attention when she’s doing things correctly and she is being well behaved.

Current Antecedent: Seeking attention from peers
Arielle uses the arguments with the attendants to gain attention from her peers
Antecedent Control Technique:
When reprimanding Arielle, the staff must take her to a place where her peers are not around to impress, if this is done, she will be less interested in arguing and more interested in getting back with her peers.
Current Antecedent: Video games
Arielle always fights over who gets to play the video games first. This is almost a daily event. ( she does not have video games at home )
Antecedent Control Technique:
Make a sign-up sheet to show when each person gets to play the video games, this should take much of the arguing over who gets to play when.
Consequences for the target behavior:
The Supervisor:
-The supervisor becomes upset when she has to discipline. Instead of getting the day-to-day work done that is needed to run the youth center, the supervisor must attend to Arielle.

-Others become distracted and if the children become out of control, the supervisor must gain that control back.
The Attendant:
-The attendants become upset when Arielle begins to misbehave, because it is time for homework to be done, and she is not doing hers.

-When the attendants have to reprimand Arielle, they are unable to help those who need help with their homework. This is unfair to the other students.

The Student:
-Due to her commotion, she must be reprimanded due to her actions. This takes time away from her homework, thus not allowing her to get it done during the after school program. This in turn forces her to do it when she gets home.
-Off task behavior leads to interaction with the adults, though it is for negative reasons. This can be considered an escape from her work.

-Off task behavior leads to socialization with her peers, and in turn increases her popularity. The other children believe it to be funny when she yells at the attendants.
-Her mother is unhappy with her because she did not finish her homework during the after school program and she is helped with it when she gets home.

The Peers:
-Her peers are distracted from their homework to watch what Arielle is doing. This causes some of them not to finish her homework.

-Arielle’s off task behavior, leads to reprimands, and thus taking up the attendants time. This takes away from the ability to help the other children with their homework.
-When Arielle is being reprimanded, this gives the other children a chance to socialize.
The Mother:
-Arielle’s mother must help Arielle with the work that she was unable to finish during the after school program because she was being reprimanded.

-Arielle’s mother has to talk to the supervisor about Arielle’s behavior, taking time away from he mother’s daily duties.
Consequences for Appropriate Behavior:
When Arielle is behaving correctly, she gets praise from the attendants and the supervisor. When she finishes her homework during the after school program, her mother gives her praise. She gets ample amounts of praise when she is behaving correctly and doing her work.
When Arielle finishes her work in the homework room, her group leader lets her play the video game first, which one depends on what room her group is in. This seems to be a good reinforcer because of her love for videogame, her group leader believes that letting her play first may encourage her to be more well behaved.
When she isn’t yelling, it seem that she is getting less attention than when she is yelling. It may be due to this, that she continues to exhibit the off task behavior. It seem that what she craves most is attention, from her peers and the adults.
Consequences for Inappropriate Behavior:
When Arielle yells, the attendants have to give her attention. They try to stop her from yelling, distracting the other children, but then she yells at the attendants. This definitely distracts the other children, getting their respect. Due to the fact that Arielle is not only getting attention from the adults but also respect from the children, Arielle want to continue to act this way. There is not a really good reason for her not to act the way that she does.
She also uses yelling as a way to avoid doing her homework. If she is being reprimanded, she gets to avoid doing her homework during the homework hour and has to do it at home. This lets he gain attention from her mom.
Arielle is exhibiting off task behavior (yells) to:
-Gain attention from adults
-Gain respect from peers
-Avoid doing homework
-Gain attention from her mother
Alternatives from off task behavior:
-Ask help with her homework: by doing this, she can get attention in a positive way from the adults. This will help her understand that she can get attention and be productive.

-Play with peers during the playtime: by doing this, she can gain attention and respect from her peers without exhibiting the off task behavior.
-Find a way to give Arielle attention with out talking to her every second of the day. Let this be something that only she and yourself know, giving Arielle a feeling of ownership and help her feel special.
-On task behavior ( not yelling ) should replace the off task behavior
( yelling ). To do this, the attendants must praise Arielle for her on task behavior ( with use of interval praise ) and attempt to ignore the off task behavior. This could be beneficial if the other students let Arielle know that they want her to stop so they can complete their work. If this is done, the two groups that she wants attention from, her peers and the adults will reinforce her.


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