Saturday, July 31, 2010


The key ingredient lacking in autism is motivation. The key ingredient in ABA is turning on that motivation. Wanting to learn is surely the key to learning. Wanting something in the first place is the first step in getting it.
My son seems somewhat resistant to my efforts at the moment and that is frustrating I am trying, just obviously not hard enough. He squirms and finds it hard to focus he is bored I guess, he runs away if not directly seated in his chair and I do want therapy to take place in other places as well that is more fun for us all.
Yesterday I saw T ask him a question at playschool , he answered but he was already out the door before he said anything. The same goes on with me if I am not very structured and strict and no wonder he finds it boring.
The question is what are we doing wrong.
Is it not enough structure in teaching settings or perhaps inconsistent teaching methods between us two.
Is it inadequate motivation?
Wrong use of reinforcement?
Should I warm myself by the idea that difficult behavior is the next step to progress. I do not expect any miracles any more and I just have to figure this out.
How many hours should we use strict dicreet teaching trial methods and how many hours on environmental teaching. I think about fifty fifty.
Suddenly I find that an item that is considered learnt suddenly does not stick and I am quite confused and frustrated. Seems that he did not pay enough attention when it was taught in the first place.
What is it?

Oh my... how can I worry so endlessly.
Just now I hear Sturla complain to his brother.. J you are not playng the game... and then going to his dad stating I have a gun.. the favourite game in this peace loving family to my utter delight so to speak is playing with guns and shooting each other. What is is with boys...such balm on my worrisome nature.


  1. We have these times too, where things seem to go backwards. It is frustrating for all of us and I don't have any advice to offer either as we just ride it out trying everything we can think of and are never sure what actually works in the end, sigh. Hope it works out for you. Jen

  2. Sturla is magnificent -

    you should give yourself a well deserved pat on the back

    WHen we reach a lull the only thing to do is to change the program

    For months our BCBA told us that we must continue with the same program- she said
    compliance was important to teach

    Stupidest advice I have ever gotten

    Becasue our objective in the ABA program was to get him to speak not teach him to obey
    Why on earth would we want a child who was an obedient automaton

    The BCBA was someone whose expereince had been with older more difficult behaviors and that is what she was basing her advice on

    On my insistence ( after many months wasted ) - we finally swithced the program and R started to fly through things again

    to this day I wonder how much precious time I wasted
    I think Natural environment training is criticial and our program is 15 minutes discrete trial in a 60 minute session -

    This is what is best for children like ours becasue the whole idea is for them to use their skills everyday

  3. OH it is a crazy merry go around. Today was good yesterday sucked and so on and so on...
    Constant revision on what works and what does not is I guess what really works :)