6. No More Meltdowns: Proven Strategies for Managing Challenging Behaviour

How Psychology and Behaviour Support Can Inform the Management of Challenging Behaviour

Managing challenging behaviour can take up much time and energy that otherwise could be spent teaching, supporting and engaging positively with students. Topics covered include environmental strategies, social skills, reinforcement and correction.

Our comprehensive lesson plans and resources provide you and your learners with the skills to overcome challenges and thrive both at home and in school. The aim of this course is to use the Actualise Academy Model of Neuroscience, Clinical/Emotional Psychology and Behavioural Science to introduce teachers to understanding challenging behaviours, what message the child might be trying to communicate, and practical tips and strategies for managing challenging behaviour.


Here is a list of the modules in this course, with the learning outcomes of each. We also build in School Self Evaluation into all courses, making the SSE Process as smooth as possible:

Module 1: Defining Challenging Behaviour. Participants will learn:

  • Learn what Challenging Behaviour is
  • Some of the main reasons for Challenging Behaviour
  • The role of function and the message behind behaviour
  • Types of Challenging Behaviour
  • The impact of Special Educational Needs and Challenging Behaviour

Module 2: Challenging Behaviour & Environmental Strategies. Participants will learn:

  • How changes to the curriculum and scheduling can impact behaviour for the better
  • How the physical environment can be modified to reduce the likelihood of challenging behaviour.
  • The ways interactions can be modified to influence student behaviour.

Module 3: Challenging Behaviour and Social Skills. Participants will learn:

  • How social skills can be taught to replace behaviour of concern
  • Which social skills are most important
  • How a deficit in these skills can lead to specific challenges

Module 4: The Role of Rules and Reinforcement. Participants learn:

  • Understand ways to construct School expectations, not negative rules
  • How to teach these expectations using reinforcement, not punishment
  • Understand the importance of catching students getting it right!

Module 5: Feedback, Reinforcement & Correction. Participants will:

  • Learn the importance of feedback in behaviour change,
  • Consider Punishment and learn about alternatives to punishment
  • Discover ways to use behaviour errors as opportunities to teach not punish

Additional Resources Available With This Course:

Additional resources include intervention plans, Dog PBS plan, grounding exercise, classroom contract, self-management resources for children, and much more.

" This course was both very interesting and worthwhile. I thought the voice overs on the presentations were excellent and engaging, they made the course far easier to absorb and enjoyable"

- Ms. Sinéad Cummins

Your Instructor

Pádraig Walsh BCBA
Pádraig Walsh BCBA

Pádraig Walsh BA, MSc, BCBA, A.F.Ps.S.I. is Actualise Academy's Behaviour Specialist. He is intrigued by people, their behaviour and his expertise lies in helping people to understand why we do what we do. His range of knowledge and experience is diverse, working with both children and adults across educational, clinical and residential settings.

Pádraig qualified with a Masters in Applied Behaviour Analysis after completing his degree in Psychology (both at NUI Galway). He has worked as a Behaviour Specialist for organisations across Ireland as well as working for 2 years in Melbourne, Australia as a consultant to an early intervention clinic for children. Pádraig has presented his research extensively at conferences on the effectiveness of Positive Behaviour Support in Ireland, Australia, Singapore and the UK. He is part of the MSc (ABA) interview panel at NUI Galway and also lectures on the MSc in Applied Behaviour Analysis in NUI Galway and on the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology in the University of Limerick.

Pádraig is the founder of the podcast series All About Dis' exploring disability issues in Ireland today. You can find the episodes on iTunes and on Soundcloud. Having spent most of his early life playing GAA in his native Westmeath, Pádraig has more recently discovered his artistic side performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival with his Improv group Kirsty.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are the Actualise Academy Courses approved by the DES for EPV days?
Yes, all 10 courses are approved for EPV days. The courses (20 hours) carry the entitlement of 3 EPV days for Primary Teachers.
Is there a limit to how many courses can I do for EPV days?
Yes, the DES has imposed a limit of 5 EPV days in any one year. This 5 day entitlement can be reached by doing any 3 of our courses: 1 ONLINE COURSE entitles you to claim 3 EPV DAYS 2 ONLINE COURSES entitles you to claim 4 EPV DAYS 3 ONLINE COURSES entitles you to claim 5 EPV DAYS
How much do the courses cost?
Courses cost €75 for one, €100 for two and €120 for three. If you pre-register and book early, or if you took one of our courses last year, you can avail of a €20 discount.
What are the course completion requirements? How much work is involved?
Courses are run online. Courses consist of a total of 20 hours each, with 20 hours of optional material and resources for you. There will be lots of complementary material for you online too. The course is divided into 5 modules x 4 hours each. Each module module breaks down into some hours of online work (lectures, MCQs) and some offline for self-directed learning (e.g. recommended videos, reading, etc.). You can do the course entirely at your own pace, and can even do it on mobile if you are on the move! Assessment of the course is as follows: 1. Multiple choice questions and short answer questions are interspersed through the 5 modules on each course, and are based on the content you will have just seen; 2. Each module requires a short reflective piece, asking you to think through how you will apply the material you have just learned to your own learning environment; 3. You must engage with the online forums for each course. Please note: You must must complete assignments for each module before moving to the next module.
When can I access my course?
All courses will be accessible from July to August 2019. Once you buy a place, you will be able to begin almost immediately.
How do I access my course?
Once you purchase a course, the material will be available to you almost immediately.
How do I deal with passwords/logins? I’m not very tech-savvy!
Our new platform is really simple to use, and the whole course runs automatically. It will pick up where you left off before, and it is really intuitive to use.
How much time is required of me?
All EPV courses must be scheduled for 20 hours. In our courses, only some of that time is online, and some is done in your own time offline. with optional work offline, We have also made sure there are lots of practical, complimentary resources available for you.
How will I get my certificate of completion?
Once you successfully complete the course, a certificate will be generated for you within a short time.

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