Swiping Items Off Table

by Concerned Mom

Our son is in ABA therapy now. The problem we are having is during table work he is just swiping everything off the table and refuses to work while laughing and carrying on. We have tried physical prompting him to pick it up but it seems like a game to him. We try to redirect but it still doesn't work. Psychologist suggest we swipe the materials off the table before he has a chance to and leave them there and watch his expression to see how he reacts, have you heard of this and do you have any suggestions?

Comments for Swiping Items Off Table

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Feb 01, 2009
Swiping Solution
by: Dana

First I would not give attention to it, because he is probably looking for a reaction. I would pick up the cards, set up the cards the way you need them for the trial you are presenting at that moment, present the Sd and do immediate hand over hand. This will keep his hands from getting to the cards. Then re present the trial and see if he goes to swipe again. If it all goes well and there is no swiping during the trial, give immediate reinforcement. If necessary block his hands by putting your hands over the cards then present the sd. Chances are if the attention to the matter goes away he will eventually not want to swipe. This technique could take time like anything else, but it has worked for me with the children I work with.

If he continues to swipe, do the above over and over. Also a strong reinforcer might help as well. Sometimes behaviors escalate before they decrease but you have to stick with the same strategy for a little while. Your son will get the idea, if I continue to swipe, I still have to work, and it will take me longer before I get to take a play break, and if I do what I need to do I will be able to get a break quicker.

With the laughing, you can either look away and wait for him to stop, then present the sd. Or another technique I use, if your son expressively labels pictures, start showing him 5 or so pictures to label one at a time, by giving sd, "what's this?" and go through them over and over until the laughing stops, then quickly do the trial you had originally planned for.

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