I have a three-year-old daughter, and last month I decided to help her learn how to wash her hands by herself. Now we usually think of washing our hands asone action, but when you think about it, you can break hand washing down into a series of simpler steps. Step 1, you turn on the water. Step 2, you get your hands wet. Step 3, you add some soap. Step 4, you rinse your hands and step 5 you turn off the water. So I broke it down into these steps and I help my daughter learn them one step at a time. I didn’t present them all at once, because that would’ve been too complicated. First I showed her step 1, turning on the water, that’s all we practiced for the next few days. Then when she started turning on the water by herself I added step 2, getting her hands wet. And for the next few days she practiced steps 1 and 2, turning on the water and getting her hands wet. Until she could do both steps on her own, then we added step 3, putting on the soap. And she practiced steps 1, 2, and 3 for a while. Then we added step 4, rinsing her hands, and eventually step 5, turning off the water. She practiced all 5 steps in sequence for a few days until she could wash her hands all by herself.
Using the example of washing hands, explain the concept of chaining behavior.
Chaining behavior is a technique used by parents to teach children a sequence of complex behaviors. For example, professor taught his daughter how to wash her hands. He divided this complex behavior into 5 steps, and taught his daughter one step at a time. He first showed his daughter step 1 and practiced it with her for a couple of days. When she has mastered this action, he showed her step 2 and let her practice both steps for another few days until she can do both by herself. Then he added the third step after, and also let her practice for a while until she can do them all. For the last two steps, he did the same thing as the previous three steps. Finally she could finish the hand washing all by herself.