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What do you think about this for handling an ODD child??

Posted by on Dec. 29, 2012 at 5:35 PM
  • 32 Replies
Dd, 9, has recently been diagnosed with ADHD, ODD, and anxiety issues. However, even her therapist thinks it's a little odd because she doesn't have problems in school. Her teachers are shocked when we tell them she's been diagnosed with these and is now on medication.
Anyways, we've all tried everything at home. Me, dh, her bio mom and step dad. (Yes she's actually my sd but I think of her as my own). Her mom calls us constantly, crying, saying she doesn't know what else to do...we've all been racking our brains trying to come up with something that will work because punishments don't phase her.
I thought of this. What if we "graded" her behavior every night?? The only thing I can think of that she gains in school by behaving is a good report card. So what if, every night we give her a letter grade on her behavior that day, and at the end of the month she gets a "report card" and sees how well she did. If she has a really good month, then she can get something extra...like a money reward, or movie night, or something like that.
And when she gets a bad grade on any certain day, we can then discuss what needs to be worked on, etc.

Does this sound like a good idea?? Can you think of any reason why it might not be a good idea??
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by on Dec. 29, 2012 at 5:35 PM
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Replies (1-10):
AmberKS
by Member on Dec. 29, 2012 at 5:49 PM
Does she act up in your home too or just for mom and sd?
JustMe0326
by Platinum Member on Dec. 29, 2012 at 5:58 PM
Oh no, she def acts up in our home, as well as mom and step dads, and everywhere else. There's just something about school that seems to be different.

Quoting AmberKS:

Does she act up in your home too or just for mom and sd?
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Bax
by on Dec. 29, 2012 at 6:00 PM
3 moms liked this

First of all, let me say that we had a similar problem in that my daughter had very few issues during school but was a mess at home.  I know teacher's thought we were making her issues up.   

Next let me say that what we found was that the reason her behavior was so off the charts at home was because she basically used every fiber of her being to "keep it together" while at school and then basically blew at home where she felt safe.  Our first solution believe it or not was doing homework the second she walked in the door.  Then once done, she did not have to think about school until the next day.  I found that when we "let her relax" a bit after school we had a ton more problems because basically (even though she wasnt saying it) it was constantly on the back of her mind that she still had work to do.

The next thing we did was enroll her in afterschool activities. Some she loved, most she didn't.  I just kept trying and trying. Small group activities worked better than large group.  We are lucky in that we have an art school in our town who holds elementary age courses.  She found and loved photography.  That was a big hit.  Soccer not so much.  Drums lessons wonderful; converstational spanish was a disaster. 

My daugther did well with rewards also but I'm not sure how she would have done with an additional pressure of being graded.  But hey try it and see.

coolmommy2x
by Ruby Member on Dec. 29, 2012 at 6:08 PM
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I think a reward system is a good idea. However, I would keep it positive, not negative. For example, instead of giving a grade, use stickers and so many stickers equals a reward. Giving a grade could be stressful and giving a bad grade could cause more harm than good. I applaud all parents working together!
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Holztastic
by on Dec. 29, 2012 at 6:18 PM

I'm not sure how that will work out, but I will say that the reason she is different at school is likely because there is more structure there. Every day is likely the same or similar, she knows what to expect and what not to expect. Creating an environment at home that is more similar to school may help. For example, you could help her create a schedule for when she's at your house, and all the things she can expect at what time. Involving her in things in the home would help too - instead of waiting for you to cook dinner, you could have her help. After dinner, she could choose an activity for the family to do together. Things like that. Also, the poster that suggested after school activities hit it right on the nose. Finding a hobby that occupies her time, gives her something to focus on and be proud of, and allows her to do something without you and dad without boredom will probably really help her!

NDADanceMom
by on Dec. 29, 2012 at 6:23 PM

we have a constant system for my son with similar issues.  We want him to stay on green, warning that he heading in the wrong direction is yellow and red means consequences.  We prefer to keep him on track all day rather than telling him if he failed at the end of the day. 

ilovemyson2002
by mom of 2 boys on Dec. 29, 2012 at 6:24 PM

 my son all has adhd and odd and been on and off meds since the age of 5 years old  and he 10 now  he has good and bad days at school and all so at home   it might be too her mom and dad are no longer to gether some kids act out 

my son didnt like soccer  he played 2 time inside and out  so we just let him finshes it and put him in cub scouts and he likes it alot better  

and trying to get him abig brother or big sister  to help him   look into that and maybe girl scouts   

ashandmasysmom
by Silver Member on Dec. 29, 2012 at 6:29 PM
3 moms liked this
I have learned a great rewards system with my ADHD/ODD daughter. First children with this diagnoses need immediate rewards not later. We use a penny system. We sat down and explained Our expectations first off and rules. Whenever she does what she told first time its 2 pennies, if she does something on her own without being told its 3 pennies. At the end if the night she can turn pennies in for small rewards an.example 10 pennies gives her 10 Minutes of extra DS time. We also have bigger rewards she can work towards as well so she doesnt spend all her pennies right away, example 100 pennies earns her a trip to dave n busters. The system works both ways if we have to tell her more then once she loses 2 pennies.(seems mean i know but it keeps her behavior in Check, a meltdown also equals,losing 3 pennies. Also when told to clean her room for example we break it down step by step and set a timer, bed needs made 5 Minutes on timer, next put clothes away 5 Minutes on timer and so forth. This system is great and works well for us.
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icn_mom
by on Dec. 29, 2012 at 6:30 PM

I am all for positive reinforcement, but I think that you should start off small. I think a month is an awful long time to be rewarded for good behaivor..

trebelcleff
by on Dec. 29, 2012 at 6:32 PM

Sounds GREAT!  My therapist said that with children with ODD sometimes you have to think outside the box to help control their behavior.  My youngest probably has it (but is only three and too young to be officially diagnosed).  He doesn't connect behaviors to consequences well unless the consequences are instantly given after a behavior, so we started using the cat's squirt bottle on him (because he knows we use it on the cats when they are doing something bad, so he makes the connection between being squirted and acting bad).  Worked like a charm and was therapist approved.  Far better than a spanking.  I like your idea about grading... when ours is older maybe I will try that!

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