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7 strategies on how to manage behavior of children with autism

Updated: Apr 10, 2023


Managing the behavior of children with autism requires a customized approach that takes into account each child's unique strengths, challenges, and needs. Here are 7 general strategies that may be helpful:

Tip# 1. Use positive reinforcement:

Children with autism often respond well to positive reinforcement. This means praising and rewarding good behavior to encourage more of it. You can use stickers, tokens, or other rewards to reinforce positive behavior. Positive reinforcement is a powerful tool for shaping behavior. Praising and rewarding desired behaviors can help reinforce them, while ignoring undesirable behaviors can help discourage them.

Tip# 2. Create a structured environment:

Children with autism often benefit from structure and routine. They often thrive on predictability, so establishing a regular routine can help them feel more comfortable and secure. Consistent routines can also help reduce anxiety and prevent meltdowns. Try to create a predictable environment with clear rules and expectations. This can help reduce anxiety and provide a sense of security.

Tip# 3. Use visual aids:

Visual aids, such as pictures or schedules, can be helpful in communicating with children with autism. Many children with autism respond well to visual aids, such as picture schedules, social stories, and visual supports like charts and graphs. These can help children understand what is expected of them and communicate their needs and feelings.

Tip# 4. Provide sensory input:

Many children with autism have sensory processing issues, which can affect how they perceive and respond to different sensations. Providing opportunities for sensory input, such as through tactile or proprioceptive activities, can help children regulate their emotions and behavior.This might include things like sensory bins, fidget toys, or weighted blankets.

Tip# 5. Break tasks down into smaller steps:

Children with autism may have difficulty processing complex instructions or tasks. Breaking things down into smaller steps can make it easier for them to understand and follow through.
Children with autism may have difficulty understanding abstract concepts and figurative language. Using simple, direct language can help them better understand what is expected of them and what is happening around them.

Tip# 6. Use social stories:

Social stories are a way to help children with autism understand social situations and expectations. A social story might describe a social situation and the expected behavior, providing clear guidance and structure.

Tip# 7. Seek professional support:

Working with professionals, such as therapists or behavioral specialists, can be very helpful in managing the behavior of children with autism. These professionals can provide guidance and support in developing effective strategies for managing behavior. Managing the behavior of children with autism often requires a team approach that includes parents, teachers, therapists, and other professionals. Working collaboratively can help ensure that everyone is on the same page and can provide the best possible support for the child.

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