Rewards and Discipline for Children with HFA and AS

One of the most difficult challenges in dealing with Aspergers (High-Functioning Autism) children is determining how to reward them when they’ve done a good job and how to discipline them when they exhibit an undesirable behavior. Parents of Aspergers children are often reluctant to use any form of discipline, and the usual reward systems don’t often work for these kids.

Many Aspergers children don’t respond as well to praise or hugs as other children do. Instead, they might respond to things like a favorite treat, a favorite toy or preferred music as a way of showing them they’ve done something good.

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  1. We had a rule of 5 minutes of silence in time out, and time doesn't start until you're quiet. If you make noise during the 5 minutes, time restarts. As soon as you can be quiet in time out for 5 minutes it's over, and you can go back to whatever you want. Tyler hated time outs (whether being spent in a corner or in his room didn't matter, he hated them both equally) and being quiet was hard for him. Since he did not enjoy the time outs we found them to be quite effective. He'd not want to end up in a time out twice in one day, and he never did. In fact, he rarely would mess up enough to get in time out twice in one week.

  2. My child never takes time outs. We have tried. He simply argues with us and then finds something else to do. Sending him to his room...doesn't work, too many toys in there. If we take something away..he screams at us until we are mentally worn down. We've tried taken a dollar out of his allowance to which it doesn't matter to him. He is eight.