A Legal Contract for the Aspie
People with ASD respect rules and laws. They might not always seem to follow them or understand them, but they try. May times there are tasks or rules that an SLP, teacher, or parent want to establish as routine for a child with ASD. Here is one plan that might help to make any school or home task legal.
- Write a contract between the child and the responsible adult
- Make the contract specific for a task or responsibility
- Keep the contract simple
- Select one task at a time per contract
- Reward the desired behavior as outlined in the contract
- Make sure the person with ASD is capable of completing the task and willing to do so
- Sign the contract together
- Have a witness for the contract
- Keep the contract in a special place selected by the person with ASD
- Review the contract on a daily basis
- Set up a reward system once the task has been completed two or three days in a row or as often as deemed appropriate in order to establish responsibility for completing it on a regular basis
I, ______________________________, accept the responsibility of ______________________________________________________.
Task: such as completing assignments
This task shall be completed __________ per __________________
# of times hour, day, or week
If, for some reason, the task cannot be completed in the agreed time,
______________________ will inform ______________________
This legal contract for completing this task begins as of ___________
Responsible Student date
Responsible Adult date
A legal contract is not something that you want to use with the non-verbal child but rather with high functioning, Asperger's children, and young adults. There must be a degree of understanding and a desire to make a change in behavior. Many people with Asperger's syndrome understand and want to make a change, can even verbalize a desire to change, but resist it. Thus, if that behavior is written, signed, and witnessed, it is more likely to happen. It will take a minimum of two weeks to make a change and will need prompts and reminders after the completion date as well. Of course, when a strategy such as this Legal Contract crosses environment, success will be more rapid and achievable.
"Speech pathologists make good things happen."