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Incorporating ABA in the Classroom

ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) is a supported treatment plan to manage the symptoms of Autism and much more. ABA therapy is for anyone who wants to reduce behaviors or improve socially significant behaviors. ABA is a method of teaching and helping individuals learn.

ABA Therapy in the Classroom

Teachers who specialize in autism, special education, general education, or anyone working with a child with autism can use ABA strategies to successfully change behaviors. Some of the behaviors these strategies work for include:

  • Attention Seeking behaviors

  • Non-cooperation

  • Temper tantrums

  • Transition challenges

  • Anger and emotional regulation

  • Aggression

  • Elopement

  • Self-Injurious behaviors

  • Property Destruction

  • Social skills and social cognition

  • Classroom management and routines

If you learn how to think like a behavior analyst, you will find it easier to lower your job stress, maintain control in your classroom, and improve your student-teacher relationships.

How to Use ABA Strategies in the Classroom

Reinforcement and Consequences

Reinforcement and consequences are part of life. Even as an adult you will experience a variety of consequences throughout your day. It is human nature to contact pleasurable things and avoid unpleasant things.

In the classroom, you can implement this idea by giving attention to behaviors you want to strengthen such as waiting appropriately, getting an assignment done on time, or sitting quietly. Redirect or ignore those behaviors you do not want to strengthen, such as throwing objects, yelling, commenting out of turn, or hitting.

To some, it feels uncomfortable to ignore disrespectful behaviors, but giving attention to undesirable behavior may be the attention they seek! Removing the teacher's attention just might be a strong enough consequence to diminish the behavior.


When you say something, you have to mean it. Do not give a demand that you are unprepared to enforce. You do not want to demand a child stop doing a behavior, such as standing on their desk, unless you have an action you are ready to implement if they ignore you.

Be Open to Change

If you are trying a strategy and it isn't working with the child, it may be the wrong strategy for that particular child's behavior. Remember to keep data! If you are working with a persistent, challenging behavior it is going to take a well-thought-out, consistent behavior strategy. You may even have to change the plan to fit the child more effectively. Data should guide your decisions. Don’t be afraid to go back to the drawing board and revise your plan.

Where to Learn More About ABA Therapy in the Classroom

ABA Pathways will help your child and your family find a clear path to a brighter future. Learn how we can help your child learn appropriate social behaviors, and better communication skills through our holistic comprehensive program. We are here to help parents, teachers, pediatricians, and anyone dealing with autistic children improves their life with our optimal treatment program.

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