Keep Your Child on Track at School – Check-in/Check-out Autism – ADHD – anxiety

Have you ever heard –

  • He isn’t finishing his work in class?

  • She is disruptive to others?

  • He isn’t focusing enough?

  • He’s refusing to participate?

We usually find out about our child’s challenges AFTER they become a big issue.

Then, we are playing catch up!

A BIG way to help is a “Check-in/Check-out System

This is a great system to –

  • Identify issues earlier

  • Improve executive functioning

  • Improve problem-solving

  • Decrease impulsivity

  • Increase appropriate behavior

  • Improve academic participation

  • Provide real-time support

  • Reward in a way that makes sense for differently wired kids.

  • Decrease anxiety

  • Improve social skills

Steps to Consider

  • One school staff person is designated to coordinate the Check-in/Check-out System. This person is responsible for all check-in staff, data, maintaining rewards, communicating with the parent and understanding when changes need to take place with the system.

  • The check-in staff person needs to understand your child and be someone with whom your child feels comfortable.

  • Pick a primary way to stay connected and communicate about data and changes. I recommend google docs.

  • The system has to be based on the child’s individual needs

      • How often are the check-ins? (2 times a day? each class period?). I recommend at least Morning, lunch/recess and end of the day.

      • Where do the check-ins take place? (efficient, safe and as quiet as possible)

  • Create a reward system including immediate small rewards during Check-in/Check-out as well as bigger rewards to be delivered at school and at home. These rewards are based on what your child wants to work for. Don’t forget – rewards may need to be changed more often than you think.

  • Choose 2-3 clear target behaviors to address. Examples include-

  1. Be prepared (has a pencil, notebook, books, and homework)

  2. Calm body (take 3 deep breaths – count 2 in and count 3 out, repeat a mantra “Things can be tough sometimes I will get through it. I always do” or “I get smarter with every experience”

  3. Thinking inside your head – “Tell me 3 things you thought but didn’t say?”, “Tell me 2 things that you wanted to do but didn’t.”

  4. No hitting

  5. No throwing

  6. Completed half my work (If the current participation is close to half, then gradually increase)

  7. Give a compliment to a peer  – child says the compliment he/she gave and names the peer. The child will also get a chance to practice this skill during the Check-in/Check-out

  • Data, Data, Data. Use an EASY and SIMPLE datasheet to check progress. Rewards are attached to progress.

  • Assume there will be adjustments. When you start any program, tweaks will need to be made to smooth out the process.

  • The Check-in/Check-out System can be gradually faded out as your child becomes more independent and their behavior improves.


Holly Blanc Moses
The Mom/Psychologist Who Gets It

P.S. YOU ARE INVITED to my Facebook group for parents, teachers and other professionals of differently wired children. 


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*All content provided is protected under applicable copyright, patent, trademark, and other proprietary rights. All content is provided for informational and educational purposes only. No content is intended to be a substitute for professional medical or psychological diagnosis, advice or treatment. Information provided does not create an agreement for service between Holly Blanc Moses and the recipient. Consult your physician regarding the applicability of any opinions or recommendations with respect to your symptoms or medical condition. Children or adults who show signs of dangerous behavior toward themselves and/or others should be placed immediately under the care of a qualified professional. Want to change how you receive these emails?
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