Zaniah’s Story

At just 4 years old, Zaniah was having frequent temper tantrums and causing harm to herself and others. She was struggling in school and her mother, Stephanie, was at a loss for how to help her.

After a significant behavioral incident in Zaniah’s classroom, Stephanie knew she needed additional help. She reached out to the Behavior Clinic in the hopes of finding strategies for calming Zaniah and keeping her safe.

A counselor worked with Zaniah and her family in their home and introduced Stephanie to nurturing activities they could do together, such as child-led play and the importance of positive reinforcement. These activities allowed Zaniah to feel proud about good behaviors, such as sharing and cleaning up her toys.

Zaniah’s counselor also discussed the importance of modeling appropriate responses to frustration and taught simple techniques for helping to calm Zaniah down when she became agitated. She worked with Zaniah on learning to talk about her feelings and needs, rather than resorting to aggressive behaviors and temper tantrums. Together, they created a “feelings box” that included self-soothing items, such as silly putty, fidget spinners, bubbles and writing tablets to help her develop age-appropriate coping skills.

Throughout treatment, Stephanie wrote down questions and independently tracked Zaniah’s tantrums in preparation for the following therapy session.

When Zaniah’s treatment came to a close, Stephanie reported that Zaniah’s behavior had greatly improved. She now feels hopeful and credits the Behavior Clinic for helping Zaniah develop the skills she needed to control her anger and understand her feelings.

“I’m so thankful for the Behavior Clinic,” said Stephanie. “I have such a great relationship with my daughter now and I see a very bright future ahead.”

Through a partnership with Marquette University, the Behavior Clinic served 553 children with significant behavioral and/or emotional issues.

Enrolled 182 children in our SAMHSA “Trauma-Informed Care for Very Young Children in Poverty” project.

73.6% of children served by the Behavior Clinic reduced their trauma symptoms, as measured by the Early Childhood Traumatic Stress Scale.