How To Implement a Token Economy System for Aspergers Kids

“I want to implement a Token Economy system with my 12 year old Aspie.  Can you give me detailed instructions on how to do this?”

Actually, a token (or economy) system is quite easy to set up. Here’s how:

1. Identify the behaviors for which your child can earn credits. An example of a good behavior would be if he took it upon himself to start and complete his homework without having to be asked twice to do so. Then you would award him a token.

2. Decide the "currency" used. Every time your "Aspie" (i.e., high functioning autistic child) does something positive, then he would earn a token (e.g., a sticker, points, poker chips, monopoly money, etc.). You can even offer bonus points for doing certain chores.

3. Determine the value of the currency (i.e., how many tokens your child should receive for each good behavior – and how many he should lose for each bad behavior). For example, he could earn 5 tokens for every time he takes the trash out without having to be asked twice, and he could lose 3 tokens for every time he picks on his sister. (Caution: If you subtract too many tokens, he will feel like there is no way to win in this game – and he will quit. In this case, you could subtract tokens for every third time he picks on his sister.)



4. Decide what type of privileges your child should receive for his tokens (e.g., a few extra minutes of computer time, a later bedtime, coloring book, favorite snack, etc.). Be sure to pick the rewards that he is truly interested in. Also, whenever you give your child a token, be sure to praise him and explain why he is receiving the token. In this way, he will know what behaviors to repeat in the future. Praise in itself is a reward, motivator – and it builds self-esteem. All kids like to hear how well they are doing.

5. Give the reward items a cost so that your child can turn in his tokens for the different rewards (e.g., 30 minutes extra time on the computer costs 10 tokens, going out for pizza costs 20 tokens, etc.). Also, be sure to have rewards with a higher value to motivate your child to maintain good behavior, but also have items at a lower value since they will be easier for him to obtain.


More resources for parents of children and teens with High-Functioning Autism and Asperger's:
 
==> How To Prevent Meltdowns and Tantrums In Children With High-Functioning Autism and Asperger's

==> Parenting System that Significantly Reduces Defiant Behavior in Teens with Aspergers and High-Functioning Autism

==> Launching Adult Children with Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism: Guide for Parents Who Want to Promote Self-Reliance

==> Teaching Social Skills and Emotion Management to Children and Teens with Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism

==> Parenting Children and Teens with High-Functioning Autism: Comprehensive Handbook

==> Unraveling The Mystery Behind Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism: Audio Book

==> Highly Effective Research-Based Parenting Strategies for Children with Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism

==> Do you need the advice of a professional who specializes in parenting children and teens with Autism Spectrum Disorders?  Sign-up for Online Parent Coaching today.


 
==> Parenting System that Reduces Problematic Behavior in Children with Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism

2 comments:

  1. We have used this for over a year now. It has been a very powerful tool in our home.

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  2. use the tokens to reward the desired behaviour. Your child is old enough to help you make a "catalogue" of rewards to trade the ones earned for. If they have a say in how the tokens are "spent" (i.e. a goal to work for), they are more likely to want to use the system.
    19 hours ago · Like

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