Lost at School

Lost at School by Ross W. Greene Read Free Book Online

Book: Lost at School by Ross W. Greene Read Free Book Online
Authors: Ross W. Greene
challenging behavior. Unsolved problems tell us with whom, over what, where, and when the behavior is occurring.
    Of course, you’re going to need a mechanism for assessing and keeping track of the lagging skills and unsolved problems that are setting the stage for challenging behavior in a given kid, so this is a good time to introduce you to the Assessment of Lagging Skills and Unsolved Problems (ALSUP) shown on page 287. The ALSUP includes a list of the lagging skills you learned about earlier in this chapter, along with a section for identifying unsolved problems. You’ll want to bring copies of the ALSUP to meetings in which a child’s challenges are being discussed. Along with the child’s other adult caregivers (the team), achieve a consensus on the skills the kid seems to be lacking. Next, achieve a consensus on the unsolved problems (in the Unsolved Problems section) that seem to be precipitating the kid’s challenging behavior. This information leaves you at the doorstep of what to do next. (Though I don’t think “quantifying” and “understanding” are synonyms, many schools find “quantifying” necessary, therefore the ALSUP is also available in Likert-scale format at lostatschool.org.
    Why is it important to take the time to achieve a consensus on lagging skills and unsolved problems? Because if caregivers have disparate notions about what’s getting in a kid’s way, and those differencesremain unresolved, then there will be no coherent treatment plan and, quite probably, little or no progress because all the adults will be working on something different and doing it in different ways. The time devoted to hashing out and coming to a consensus about a kid’s lagging skills and unsolved problems is usually very well spent (if a kid is still exhibiting challenging behavior, it’s a pretty surefire bet no one’s figured these things out yet).
    Once you have a decent handle on a kid’s lagging skills and unsolved problems, you’ve taken a major step in the right direction because the kid’s challenging episodes are now highly predictable, which is good news if you’re a teacher and have a class full of twenty-five other students. It’s also good news if you’re a parent who wants to play an active role in making sure things go better for your child at school. See, the process of teaching skills and solving problems is a lot easier if it’s done proactively. If you’re a teacher, you don’t have to wait until the kid disrupts the class before you try to solve the problem that causes the disruption; you can do it in advance because the problem and the disruption are predictable. And if you’re a parent—let’s face it, you’re not there when your child is disrupting the class—you can collaborate with your child’s teachers and play a role in solving the problems and teaching the skills as well. A lot of adults find it hard to believe that a kid’s challenging behaviors are highly predictable, believing instead that such behaviors are unpredictable and occur out of the blue. But that’s not true, not if you know what skills the child is lacking and what his triggers are.
    Most challenging kids will have many lagging skills and many unsolved problems, and this can feel overwhelming. But you can’t fix everything at once, so you shouldn’t try. Better to prioritize two or three unsolved problems to work on first. If you solve these and other problems collaboratively, you’ll simultaneously teach the kid many of the skills he’s lacking.
    At this point, it might be helpful to meet a few kids and give you an opportunity to contemplate the lagging skills and unsolved problems that are contributing to their challenging behavior.
    Cody is a six-year-old first grader whose biggest problem is physical aggression toward his classmates. His teacher observes that Cody often hits other kids when they disagree with him, when he feels left out, or when he

Similar Books

Southern Discomfort

Rachel Burns

The Executioness

Tobias S. Buckell, J.K. Drummond

More Than Enough

Ashley Johnson

Angels on Sunset Boulevard

Melissa de La Cruz

Fix It for Us

Emme Burton

Season of Fear

Christine Bush

Long Knife