Intensive ABA Services
Token reinforcement systems are useful classroom and therapy tools to increase appropriate behaviors. In such a system, a token (e.g., penny, sticker, etc.) is given following appropriate behavior, and after a predetermined number of tokens are collected, they can be traded in for a back-up reinforcer (e.g., candy, toy, interactive activity, etc.).
In the classroom, token systems are often helpful in providing a less obtrusive form of reinforcement. Token systems may also be utilized to gradually delay the child's access to a more powerful reinforcer. Thus, the child may earn tokens as immediate reinforcers but later trade them for something more powerful, such as a trip to the store.
A token system requires three basic elements: 1) small, countable items, 2) a back-up reinforcer, and 3) a clearly defined behavior. Some may be familiar with the commonly used token system in which pennies are placed on a clipboard with Velcro. However, there are many ways to make token systems more individualized, based on a child's interests or skill level. Some ideas include:
Be creative and let the child's interests lead you in the development of reinforcement systems. Most of all, have fun!
Lovaas Institute – Northern New Jersey
Do you have an experience with a creative format to typical programming? Share them with us here
The names of all children in this newsletter have been changed in respect for family confidentiality.
Hide Behind the Table! Turn the table on its side with the legs toward you. Hide until the child stands up to find you and then either roar or act scared.
Stayin' Alive! Break out your best John Travolta Disco imitation.