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Sensory Versus Behavior Checklist

If you are a school-based Occupational Therapist, teacher, or a parent of a child with sensory processing difficulties, then you often ponder the question when a child "misbehaves" was it due to sensory concerns or behavior.  This FREE sensory versus behavior checklist can act as a guide when you observe a child's behavior

If you are a school-based Occupational Therapist, teacher, or a parent of a child with sensory processing difficulties, then you often ponder the question when a child “misbehaves” was it due to sensory concerns or behavior.  This FREE sensory versus behavior checklist can act as a guide when you observe a child’s behavior (download at the bottom of the post).

There is No EASY Answer

Unfortunately, there is no easy answer.  We all know that every child can act differently in various situations.  But we can determine patterns and look closely to see what might have occurred before, during and after to help develop an action plan.

We all wish there was a quick fix.  That it would be as simple as “Johnny seems to be “melting down” during circle time – here is a therapy ball to sit on” and magically Johnny no longer melts down during circle time.

This.never.happens.  Ok, I won’t say never but the majority of the time there is not a quick fix.  Johnny may have “melted down” because a student next to him was touching him OR the lights were flickering OR the classroom was too loud OR… the list could go on and on.

Take the Time

Instead, take the time to observe and document the child’s behavior and undesired actions.  By using this sensory versus behavior checklist during classroom and home observations, you will take a closer look to see what is occurring before, during and after.  This is dependent upon the task or skill that is expected of the child at that time, the location, the overall environment, peers and adults.

Sensory versus Behavior Checklist

The FREE checklist is available in PDF format and WORD format.  You can type directly on the WORD version.  The sensory versus behavior checklist has you document the following:

Describe the overall behavioral outcome, episode or concern.

Describe what was occurring immediately before the undesired outcome.

Describe the child’s reactions during the undesired outcome.

Describe any adult or peer reactions.

List the sensory characteristics of the activity or skill.

List the sensory characteristics of the environment

List any successful strategies that helped the child

Overall assessment

ACTION PLAN

More Sensory Resources

This Is It Sensory or Is It Behavior Course - On Demand 2 Hour Webinar discusses various differences between sensory and behavior.  The presenter is a pediatric Occupational Therapist, Cara Koscinski OTR/L who is also a mother to 2 sons with special needs.

If you need more information on whether it is sensory or behavior, check out the Is It Sensory or Is It Behavior Course.  This on-demand 2-hour webinar discusses the various differences between sensory and behavior. The presenter is a pediatric Occupational Therapist, Cara Koscinski OTR/L who is also a mother to 2 sons with special needs.

Typical Classroom Sensory-Based Problem Behaviors & Suggested Therapeutic Interventions

If you need intervention ideas to put your plan into action, Typical Classroom Sensory-Based Problem Behaviors & Suggested Therapeutic Interventions digital download includes suggested therapeutic interventions based on 12 different problem behavior categories.

Download your FREE Sensory Versus Behavior Checklist

Sign up to receive the weekly email newsletter and announcements from Your Therapy Source.  You will be redirected to the download.  It is available in PDF format and WORD format.  

If you are a school-based Occupational Therapist, teacher, or a parent of a child with sensory processing difficulties, then you often ponder the question when a child "misbehaves" was it due to sensory concerns or behavior.  This FREE sensory versus behavior checklist can act as a guide when you observe a child's behavior