Biting, hitting and throwing tantrums are just a few behavior struggles for families. Unfortunately, these types of challenging behaviors are what prompt child care programs to expel young students. A nationwide study of expulsion rates in state funded preschool programs demonstrated that children are expelled at a rate of three times more than kindergarten students.

Challenging behaviors can often be resolved with simple strategies that develop social and emotional skills.

Here is one mom's story of how her experience with our Behavior Support Services helped her family. Sara and her three-year-old son Brian worked with one of our specialists to help him gain better self-control and regulation.

"Easy and comfortable."

In using your behavior support service, we found great comfort, in being educated on ways to help our child gain better self-control and regulation. We found working with Margaux, the Behavior Support Specialist, easy and comfortable. She took the time and interest to really listen during our parent meeting, and made an effort to spend time with our child to make her own assessment.

"It felt like having a toolbox of effective solutions!"

She then thoughtfully put together an action plan that included us as a family, our preschool teachers, as well as some one on one time with our child. She took us through a step by step process, where she equipped us with ways, options, and methods that we can draw from as any situation arises. It felt like having a toolbox of effective solutions!

"This has made our time together even more enjoyable!"

We also felt like we were empowering our child with words, scenarios, and solutions to every day hurdles! It was like exercising a muscle that got stronger and stronger. We saw real progress and felt like the plan of action really worked! We feel like our child's days are happier, with fewer frustrations. Our interaction is much more productive, and I must say, even though we simply adore our child and love every moment together, this has made our time together even more enjoyable!

We like just about every idea Margaux presented, but my favorite two are; the noise level card and the play choice cards. Our child understood noise levels that were appropriate for inside and outside voices. This made dinner time, eating out, and other times when we needed volume control so easy!
The play choice cards, were also wonderful. They basically give children options when conflict arises with friends or siblings, these didn't only give our child solutions to draw from, but they really opened our mind to the fact that creating solutions for any given issue that might come up, and explaining it, would then empower our child with solutions to draw from. This could be applied to everything!

I’ve gained so much from this experience. I’ve learned to set home rules to help our kids understand expectations and set them up for success, held family meetings to discuss challenges and solutions and support our children through them, and gained invaluable understanding into our child's mind, allowing us to dig deep for patience and really experiencing a break through!

"Invaluable resource for families..."

YMCA Childcare Resource Service’s Behavior Support program is an invaluable resource for families, and I can personally say that it has changed our family dynamics. I know what it feels like to wonder what's wrong, why are my child's reactions amplified and different from other kids, to make an effort and fail repeatedly. This service gives hope, practical solutions, and gives a parent ways to pour that incredible amount of love for a child into actions that will help that child along!

We couldn't be more grateful to Margaux for her time, patience, and sound advice, she always listened, was so approachable, so easy to chat with, she was never condescending or judgmental, and trust me, we have had our share of that. She always made us feel like she understood how precious our child is, I know this point might be looked over in passing, but we had experiences when we felt our child was a number, a "job", or a difficult child someone had to "deal with", she was so so different from that. She really enjoys helping kids and it really shows in how she works with them and us as parents!
We just adore her and will always be so grateful to her!

Only thing I would add is a word to a concerned parent, we've been there and our hearts go out to you, it's a tough place to be, loving a little child more than the breath you draw and not knowing how to help them. We even had someone tell us something was wrong with our child and did further testing. Nothing was "wrong" but something wasn't quite right. Our child needed support with certain behaviors, practiced and got better.

For more information on how you can receive YMCA behavior support
services, contact Margaux Marquez at 619-521-3055 ext. 2406 or e-mail
her at [email protected].

Read more about Sara's story in this issue of the CRS CONNECT.

Download the flyer for more information on Behavior Support Services.