The number one reason that children are “kicked out” of child care settings is due to exhibiting challenging behaviors. Caring for children with challenging behaviors requires a caregiver with knowledge in child development, adaptations to meet the individual child’s needs as well as working with the parents and other community resources. Through the Indiana Partnership for Inclusive Child Care (IPICC) project, IACCRR is committed to assisting providers with resources, on-site technical assistance and resources to reduce the number of challenging behaviors in their setting which results in happier children, staff and families!

 Inclusion Specialists:

There are nine Inclusion Specialists (one in each child care resource and referral agency) to assist providers in caring for children with challenging behaviors. The Inclusion Specialists provide training, on-site technical assistance, resources and other services to assist providers in including children with challenging behaviors. To access the name and contact information for your Inclusion Specialist, please click here.


Inclusion Specialists throughout the state offer a variety of trainings related to disability and challenging behavior issues. Trainings are offered throughout the state each month. Feel free to access any training throughout the state. Click here for a list of available trainings. 

Interested in receiving training from the comfort of your own home? Access one of the many webinars that are offered on a monthly basis. Click here to access Training Central. Participants will receive a certificate upon completion of the webinar that can count toward licensing or Paths to QUALITY™ training hours.

Get to know the children in your setting a little better! Print off and ask parents to complete the “What My Child Needs” sheet. This will give you information about what it will take to help the children have a good day whether it’s a piece of specialized equipment or something more general like having a specific toy to sleep with during nap.

 Social and Emotional Development         

“Outcomes for children exhibiting challenging behaviors indicate numerous short and long-term consequences ranging from school expulsion in the elementary grades, to gang involvement and drug abuse in adolescence, to imprisonment in adulthood.”  -Bickham & Rich, 2006 

“Research shows that when educators teach children the key skills they need to understand their emotions and the emotions of others, handle conflicts, problem solve, and develop relationships with peers, their challenging behavior decreases and their social skills improve.”    -Joseph & Strain 2003

“Preschool children are three times more likely to be ‘expelled’ than children in grades K-12.”  -Gilliam, 2005

Need help with children with challenging behaviors? Focusing on increasing a child’s social and emotional development will greatly reduce challenging behavior. Check out the resources available through the Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL) at Inclusion Specialists are available to assist with these resources as well.

 “What Works Briefs are short documents with practical suggestions for supporting children’s social and emotional development and preventing challenging behaviors.
For a list of books that promote children’s social and emotional competence click here.

Caregivers Learning Indiana’s Model for Building Social skills (CLIMBS):

CLIMBS is a project designed to assist child care providers to increase the social and emotional appropriateness of their program using research-driven and proven tools from CSEFEL. Activities included in CLIMBS are:

  •  pre/post assessment for the social and emotional appropriateness of the child care setting
  • development of an on-site technical assistance plan to be carried out by the child care staff and Inclusion Specialist
  • individualized training for staff

Providers must be a Level 3 or 4 Paths to QUALITY™ provider to participate in this project. Due to the intensive nature of these activities each Inclusion Specialist only accepts a pre-determined number of programs. If interested, contact your Inclusion Specialist. (Make it so that they can click on “Inclusion Specialist” and it will take them directly to the IPICC flyer.)

“Teachers report that challenging behavior is their number one training need.” 

- Joseph, Strain & Skinner, 2003

Some quotes from CLIMBS providers:

“This has increased my understanding of social development. I no longer think of it as being equal to other areas of learning but the foundation.”

“I love that this program allows for room observation and provides feedback/suggestions specific to staff, child and program needs. General presentations are helpful but I think staff benefit from training specific to their needs.”

“Having an objective person observe and give feedback has been a strong feature of this process. Often times if we look at something long enough we don’t always see the need for change. Having a “fresh” set of eyes is most beneficial.”