Saturday, March 3, 2007

Task A11 - Waits for Reinforcer

What if the child can't WAIT? This just might be one of the most difficult areas for parents and children. Well, I have invented the WAIT card. This little card works magic! I use a 3x5 index card and just print the word "wait" on it.

Practice for this takes two or three seconds several times per day. Each time you practice using the "wait" card, increase the time.
  • Hold a "goodie" in your lap, and tell the child you are going to give it to him or her.
  • Hand the "wait" card to the child while saying "Please wait."
  • Almost immediately, give the child the "goodie" with one hand while taking the "wait" card with the other and saying "Thank you for waiting."
  • Slowly increase the "wait" time.

Remember a younger child cannot wait too long anyway, but this system really helps them learn how to wait. The "wait" card can be used to help children take turns in circle, wait in line to leave the classroom, and I like to hand one to a child along with the computer icon to help them wait when I need to change a program. Objects can also “wait.” For instance, a puzzle that needs to be finished at a later time can “wait” for the child to return. Just put the “wait” card on top of it. The "wait" card is a promise I never break. If I ask a child to wait, I always come back to him or her. Some very young children do not quite understand the concept of "wait" but do seem to understand they cannot get the "goodie" without the wait card. I hold out my hand and they might have to pick the card up off the floor, but they know it is the "ticket" to the prize.Try this ~~ it really works! We call this the "wait" card.

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