Backward Chaining can have different definitions for different fields, but when teaching life skills to children with special needs, it refers to breaking down the steps of a task and teaching them in reverse order. This gives the child an experience of success and completion with every attempt. Instead of the child starting at the beginning and getting lost somewhere through, with the adult having to complete the task, the adult does all but the last step and lets the child complete the work. Then the adult fades back, doing less and less while the child does more and more, always ending with the child performing the final step.
Alternate Spellings: Backwards Chaining, Backward-Chaining
Examples: To teach a child to make a bed, you might break down the steps as:
- Remove the pillow
- Pull up the top sheet
- Tuck in the top sheet
- Pull up the comforter
- Put the pillow back in place