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Alyssa Lesch

Assignment 17: FBA Part 2

Participant and Setting:

John is a fifth grade student who enjoys video games and football as well as

hanging out with his friends. He is presently performing below grade levels in one to two

content areas, writing and reading. However, his lowest subject is writing. He has

problems with staying on task and staying motivated to complete assignments in writing.

He has difficulty with wanting to complete assignments as well as feeling like he has the

ability to complete them which leads to his poor motivation. John had been diagnosed

with ADHD and is on medication that is a time release medication. He is supposed to

take it in the mornings before he comes to school but he often forgets. When he does

not take his medication he has difficulty in school with staying on task. When he is off

task he says things like he hates his helpers (paraeducators) and that he hates school

and work. This mainly happens during writing although it does happen at other times

during the day such as during reading. Instead of completing assignments with the

assistance of his helper (paraeducator) John will throw his papers on the floor or put his

head down on his desk. He also will ask to get help from the special education teacher

instead of utilizing his helper.

John has attended three different elementary schools since kindergarten. He has

been tested and he does qualify for special education services. John qualifies for

special education services due to his ADHD. He is also receiving resource help to work

on his writing and reading. He has recently been adopted and his adoptive parents are
very involved in his schooling. However, in the past his foster parents and birth parents

were not involved.

John is currently attending an elementary school that has a K-5 inclusion based

special education program. He is in a general education fifth grade classroom with a

helper (paraeducator) for the majority of the day unless he has a problem and needs to

be removed to regroup in the Life Skills Classroom which is the special education room.

His assignments are modified to fit his specific needs and abilities. He is able to dictate

his writing to his helper during writing time and his assignments are modified by making

them smaller. For example, if the class is asked to write five sentences John is only

required to write or dictate three. However, he still has trouble getting his assignments

completed. The teachers main goal is increase John’s motivation to complete his

assignments so that he spends less time off task.

Behavioral Definitions:

The target behavior is off task behavior during writing. This is defined as John

getting in and out of seat, telling his helpers he hates them, and saying that he hates to

do his assignments.

The replacement behavior is on task behavior. This would be defined as John

staying in his seat during writing, working on and completing his writing assignments,

and accepting help from his helper (paraeducator) when he needs or wants it.

Interviews and A-B-C Data
Interviews were conducted with John, his paraeducator and his two teachers; the

special education teacher and his general education teacher. A-B-C data were collected

in his general education class during writing time.

Staff Interview. John’s two education teachers as well as his paraeducator met to

deliberate about his behavior and academics. The general education teacher conveyed

that she felt John was on task about 20% of the time, however, the special education

teacher and the paraeducator agreed that the percentage was lower when they were

with him. They indicated that he seems uninterested in the assignments themselves an

unmotivated in completing them in a timely manner.

All the adults reported that when John is off task he seems to be trying to avoid

the assignment, especially in writing. John seems to enjoy other subjects such as

science and mathematics and tends to be more on task during these times. The adults

also reported that when John has avoided the assignment, his behavior changes

quickly. At the time of the interview John had completed little work, however he needed

constant help and the performance level was rather low. When John tried to avoid an

assignment he begins to throw his papers on the floor or say that he hates the

assignment or his paraeducator. When these behaviors occur he paraeducator will

usually remove John from the situation until he calms down. This eventually leads to

John getting out of doing the assignment. Once he has been removed he is able to calm

down rather quickly.

The general education teacher specified that John is able to do his math and

science. The teacher is confident in the fact that John can do his math and science

assignments with more ease than his writing assignments (where he tends to throw his
papers) because during math and science time his work is completed on time and it is

accurate. He also has no meltdowns during the math and science times. Due to this

information being discussed the team determined that John’s main difficulty is the area

of writing and reading. However, the general education teacher also reported that when

the class is in computer lab John is able to type up an essay or story that he has worked

on. However, this is only true if he is copying an essay or story that he was able to

dictate to his paraeducator. This is the only tie during writing or reading that he is able to

stay on task and complete an assignment. She has started to allow him to dictate all

writing assignments unless it was an exam. This seems to help John to complete

assignments in writing.

Student Interview. John’s interview showed that John feels he is skilled in math

and science which is what his general education teacher also stated. He attributes this

to the fact that he enjoys these content areas. John does not feel like he is capable in

writing or reading. He states that they are hard and he isn’t as fast as the other

students. John informs us that he enjoys playing video games when he gets home from

school and football at break and lunch recess with his friends at school. He dislikes

doing his chores and his homework at home.

A-B-C Data. A-B-C data were collected during three 10 minute periods of

instruction and assigned activity in writing. During these observation times, the target

behavior occurred 10, 13, and 17 times. This is representative of the off task behavior

John is showing such as throwing paper on the floor or saying he hates his work or

paraeducator. The antecedent for all of the instances of off-task behavior was direction

from the teacher or helper to writing a paragraph based off of a writing prompt in the last
20 minutes of class. This leads me to believe that John’s behavior is stemming from not

wanting to do writing. The consequence to John’s off task behavior was that he was

removed from the class and ultimately avoided the writing assignment. The teacher only

time John will finish a writing assignment is if he able to dictate them. When he is

required to write the assignments himself he does not finish them. The teacher keeps

data on if the assignments were dictated or not

Function of the Behavior

The interview and A-B-C data indicated that John’s off task behavior is to avoid

writing assignments (negative reinforcement-activity). The function of John’s off task

behavior was to escape from these activities.