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Spadoni College of Education
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Database Contact:

Dodi Hodges, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor

Self-Talk

Strategy #: 23

Content Area: Beh./Classroom Mgt.

Grade Level: 4-6

South Carolina Standard

Source
Dunhaney, L. (2003).  A practical approach to managing the behaviors of students with 
     ADD.  Intervention in School and Clinic, 38(5), 267-279.  Retrieved March 24, 2008, from
     ERIC database.

Material Needs
None needed. Optional index card and marker.

Procedures
"Self-Talk" is a strategy used to teach students with ADD to regulate their own behavior, such as blurting out comments or clowning around at inappropriate times, using private speech. This strategy is to be implemented individually.
1. First, teach student to identify the specific
behavior by observing another student possibly
exhibiting the behavior, how this impacts the
classroom, and why it is important to curb this
behavior.

2. Provide student with a key phrase or phrases that
they can repeat to themselves, such as
a. "Look before I leap"
b. "Think before I speak."
c. "Listen before I speak."
or encourage student to develop other personal, more
meaningful (more likely to be remembered) phrases.

3. Ask the student to say the key phrase aloud.

4. Ask the student to whisper the phrase.

5. Suggest that the student only move his or her lips to
mouth the phrase.

6. Ask the student to say the phrase silently to himself
(herself).

Adaptation
"Self-Talk" is a strategy used for students with ADD. For a student with mild mental retardation, the key phrase could be written down on an index card with a marker. The card could then be placed on his/her desk to guide the student through a difficult situation. The card could also be put in a pocket for referral during social situations such as job training.

Rationale
This strategy will help students reduce outbursts during class and/or in situations that are complex or difficult.

Research adapted by
Erin Causey Todd

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