I worked in an environment with students with serious emotional and behavioral disorders. A couple of things I noticed had me design a program to interfere with some of their behaviors and I did experience some success.
1) The students did not have good nutrition. Seriously, they were coming to school eating cheesy puff snacks and cola for breakfast, sent from home.
The first intervention I recommend for these students is adding fresh fruits and vegetables to their daily diet. This is done by having a big basket of apples or other fruit available for munching any time of day. Baby carrots, apples, oranges, cherries, anything you can provide, will help. If you are the parent of this child, cut out all the food that is not grown by nature. The mind on bad nutrition is a seriously malfunctioning body part. Add fresh juices (the kind made from a juicer) I recommend 12 ounces per day one at night and one in the morning. You will be surprised what the addition of this burst of nutrition will do to help your child’s brain function more normally.
2) The other thing I noticed, is that many of the students were not getting enough sunshine or exercise.
The second intervention is to take your child out to a track and run ’em. Running for at least one mile per day will help your child release positive endorphins that will make for happier brain function. Create a reward for every day the child runs the track a mile. The reward could be anything from computer time to a trip to the beach after so many times. Try to keep the rewards healthy so the effort and reward don’t cancel each other out. 🙂
3) The children often came to school with very little sleep the night before.
Sometimes the brains of these students just won’t shut off and help them to sleep. Lack of sleep creates deeper and deeper brain malfunctioning until the child may be completely out of control. Teach your child to sleep by setting a regular bedtime and putting on some soothing music (hard metal is not soothing, I mean quiet piano music or relaxation music. Use Pandora to find a relaxation station if you don’t have soothing music readily available in your home.) Teach your child to do a simple meditation. My dad taught this to me when I was young.
Start the music: Tell your child to lay down on his/her back and starting with the toes, squeeze the muscles in the toes as tight as they can, hold it for twenty seconds, then release. Next, have your child squeeze the muscles in their feet and toes and hold it tight for twenty seconds, then release. Slowly add a small area of the body working all the way up to the entire body squeezed tight for twenty seconds then released. Talk your child calmly through this meditation until they can do it for themselves. Most children will not last until the meditation is complete, most will be sound asleep far before they reach their arms.
I’m not saying that implementing the above three ideas will help every child, or that your child will be transformed entirely by the above methods. I have seen these methods make incredible changes in children’s behavior and I know for SOME children, the above ideas implemented effectively, it will be a life changing, good habit forming life changer.
Good luck, and I’m here for you.