S for Stealing: Positive Behaviour Support

When a child develops the habit of stealing, it can be quite distressing for everyone involved. The parents of the child who steals feel embarrassed, annoyed at their child, and worried about the child’s future. For the person from whom the item is stolen, it is a painful experience and can leave them feeling shaken, angry, and fearful that it will happen again. If the stealing behaviour is prolonged and ongoing, it deteriorates the bonds of value, trust, and respect within relationships and affects how others see, react, and engage with the child.

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Stealing can occur across different contexts (e.g. within a childcare setting, early childhood centre or school, primary or secondary school, disability support services, or youth services).  Stealing can dramatically change the climate of these surroundings.  A considerable amount of time and energy can be spent on the child showing the stealing behaviour, which can have a deleterious effect on the quality of the learning experience for all the children.

Based on the evidence-based Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) approach, this user-friendly guide, S for Stealing, will help you develop a comprehensive PBS plan step-by-step. You will learn how to do the following:

  1. Identify why your child is stealing (assess),
  2. Respond appropriately when your child steals (manage), and
  3. Prevent them from stealing (prevent).

Use the practical tools (checklists, forms, and strategies) provided to develop comprehensive PBS plans that can be used to support children of all ages consistently in all contexts. This invaluable resource is useful for parents, caregivers, childcare educators, primary and secondary educators, supervisory, allied health professionals, and mental health professionals.


Download Accompanying Forms Resource