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Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child has special needs. If you have any serious concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP or other suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN

Mumsnet/KIDS support session on challenging behaviour: Thursday September 20, 9pm

(122 Posts)
RowanMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 17-Sep-12 10:01:09

Hello there,

We're pleased to announce that the third support session with members of KIDS staff will be held on Thursday September 20 between 9pm amd 10pm (in the hope that this will avoid most kids' bed-times!). The topic will be challenging behaviour. (You can see the first session here and the second session here.)

KIDS is a national charity working with disabled children, young people and their families across England. The KIDS representative at this session will be Kim Steele (KIDS Development Coordinator for the south-east).

The idea of these support sessions is to complement the advice and support that Special Needs posters already give each other with the insight and experience of people working for an organisation in the field. We hope that the session will pull together perspectives and advice from MNers and from KIDS staff, and that the thread will serve as a reference point for posters looking for advice about behaviour.

It would be great to have as many of you as possible join us 'live' on Thursday evening, but if you can't make it, please also post up any advance questions for here.

We'd really appreciate your feedback on these sessions, so if you can find the time to fill in a survey after the session, that would be great - it's open to lurkers as well as posters - to everyone who has seen the thread.


StarlightMcKenzie Thu 20-Sep-12 21:01:49

So what is challenging behaviour?

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 20-Sep-12 21:03:58

Is there any particular ethos or methodology to your behaviour support strategies? Are they evidence based, research-based, experience-based etc.?

UnChartered Thu 20-Sep-12 21:05:34

i like Star's question - what is the 'official' definition of challenging behaviour?

beautifulgirls Thu 20-Sep-12 21:08:50

DD#2 (6yrs old in year 2) is having real difficulties with focus on tasks and is getting very upset when she is being reminded/pushed etc to refocus. Even staff in school are having her in tears. I have tried to explain to her to help her understand. Any top tips here? She doesnt have a diagnosis of any specific problem but may tick the boxes for ADHD? (She has two sisters one with ASD).

professorpoopsnagle Thu 20-Sep-12 21:09:05

My DC who is 6 has become more and more violent over the last few months. He lashes out at siblings and does not seem to be remorseful when we explain his behaviour. Would welcome some pointers about steps to take- reading, websites etc.

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 20-Sep-12 21:09:10

Is slow typing a challenging behaviour? wink

KimSteele Thu 20-Sep-12 21:09:19

StarlightMckenzie - Good evening, I see you have questions about what is classed as challenging behaviour I have also seen that the formal definition has been posted. I would like to add that from our experience challenging behaviour can be perceived differently depending on the setting and/or individual.
Have you got any questions?

CillaSlack Thu 20-Sep-12 21:09:57

From my experiences 'challenging' is something that the school can't handle.

cornzy Thu 20-Sep-12 21:12:31

what training do you think that teachers should have in order to be able to work effectively with children who may struggle to control their behaviour?
what do you think of golden time - do you feel it is valuable/effective with children who have challenging behaviour?

KimSteele Thu 20-Sep-12 21:13:41

StarlightMckenzie - KIDS works to the TEAM TEACH approach which is 95% is de-escalation strategies, understanding the communictaion behind the behaviour and identifying triggers

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 20-Sep-12 21:17:04

What in your experience CAUSES challenging behaviour?

When dealing with it do you think we should focus our energy on managing the behaviour or the triggers/causes for it?

What are the pitfalls of each of these?

Thank you!

KimSteele Thu 20-Sep-12 21:18:42

Cornzy - we do not work in a school setting and we appreciate that every school has its own policies and procedures however we feel that teachers could be given training in understanding ASD and understanding that experiences drive feelings which result in behaviours that often result in reactions which can cause conflict .

KimSteele Thu 20-Sep-12 21:20:07

StarlightMckenzie - ideally we need to find out the reason behind the behaviour so that we can intervene earlier before any crisis occurs.

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 20-Sep-12 21:20:39

Thank you Kim.

Woukd you mind explaining the TEAM TEACH approach?

Is it something parents can use or is it for classrooms?

Is the focus of this approach to minimise disruption or teach the child how to communicate more effectively and acceptably?

UnChartered Thu 20-Sep-12 21:21:46

'could' be given training?

since challenging behaviours occur with many children, not just ones on the autistic spectrum, do you think teachers should perhaps study this as part of their teaching degrees?

cornzy Thu 20-Sep-12 21:22:07

what advice would you give to parents who are told by schools that their child's behaviour is 'challenging' if they feel that the school's approach to dealing with their child is a contributory factor?

KimSteele Thu 20-Sep-12 21:23:58

it is important to identify the anxiety and trigger first, so the need for diversion, support and reassurance at this point. That is what needs to be monitored before it escalates.

cornzy Thu 20-Sep-12 21:24:20

(and thank you for answering my other question by the way smile)

KimSteele Thu 20-Sep-12 21:26:36

StarlightMckenzie - Team teach can be used by anyone who is trained, the core values of team teach are to support childrenn and young people by understanding the function of their behaviour and to support yps to learn more accepatble means of expressing their needs for support

mariamma Thu 20-Sep-12 21:27:36

The challenging behaviour I really struggle with is the mealtime nonsense. Not eating, constant moaning, fighting, I don't like it, leaving the table...

and then complaining of hunger 2 hours later, after being tucked in for the night, and eventually having to be fed in order to sleep (or worse, yet another letter from the school to hospital 'Minimaria always appears to be hungry')

V 'stuck' on the obsessions in 'zone-out' time, so oblivious to any physical signs of needing food. Can feed in dribs and drabs in the holidays to avoid this but in term-time it's breakfast (as above), pack lunch (never finished), and then dinner (as above). A pre-dinner snack makes little difference to the behaviour but when I remember to offer it, probably does help the calorie intake.

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 20-Sep-12 21:29:52

Thank you. How do you teach them more acceptable forms of behaviour?

And what kind of training does the trainee receive?

KimSteele Thu 20-Sep-12 21:30:48

Cornzy - You may have already tried this apporach but asking the school to discuss and possibly the school Senco how best to manage his behaviour and to ascertain what behaviours they find challenging and to help identify triggers. Parent partnership services can also support with this.

bochead Thu 20-Sep-12 21:32:54

Are there any opportunities for parents to be taught appropriate safe restraint techniques?

I got lucky as I was shown how to do this as a teen for my sibling, but I've been shocked to find 20+ years later there is no way to update my rusty knowledge. This strikes me as a useful skill even for parents of NT kids to have in case of emergency btw. First aid courses for parents are readily available via HV's & surestart etc. Could safe restraint not also be taught?

In extreme cases it could reduce the risk of abuse (- strangling a kid as my son's ex HT did is NOT safe restraint! ) On the same note - what legal onus is there on schools/childcare providers to implement effective restraint training for relevant staff?

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 20-Sep-12 21:33:48

Please may I also ask if you and Heather read the MNSN boards?

KimSteele Thu 20-Sep-12 21:35:00

Mariamma - Have you tried to feed him little and often as he may not like to eat big meals at meal times? or maybe smaller portions at meal times that he does finish and enjoy then you can give lots of praise to reinforce this, So he is getting positive attention for his good behaviour rather then the negative association of a battle at meal times. Has your young person got additional needs?

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