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Handling Aggressive Preschool Behavior

by T Akery | June 24th, 2014 | Behavior, Preschool

children-185981_1280Aggressive behavior from a Preschooler is often the result of bad impulse control. The Preschooler typically gets mad and then lashes out in an inappropriate way. Sometimes, this behavior results in hitting or biting another child. Smaller siblings are often the target because that is who the Preschooler is around the most. But other classmates can be a target of their rage. Fortunately, this behavior can be corrected pretty early on.

One of the things you can do as a parent to help with this aggressive behavior is to look at your own impulse control when you are mad. If you are throwing things and causing a commotion when you are angry, then your Preschooler is going to pick up this same exact behavior. It is harder to correct if you don’t apply some of the same techniques to yourself. This can potentially undo all of the work you put into correcting their behavior.

The most important thing is to remove them from the situation. Preferably, this should be done before the Preschooler has lost all control of his impulses. But even if something has happened, they need to be moved to a different location and away from whatever made them mad. This is the first step in helping them regain control of themselves.

Time out is an appropriate means for letting them vent their anger. At this point, they may throw a fit or protest being put there. But it is necessary to give them and yourself a chance to calm down from the aggression. It may take awhile for the tantrum to play itself out and you may have to step away to avoid venting your own anger at them. However, it is important to wait until they are calm.

Once you both have calmed down, it is time to talk to them about their behavior. You should discuss things like what made them mad and techniques on how they could have handled it better. Remember to address them in their language rather than yours. But getting them to think about what to do when they start getting mad or how they should just walk away will help them figure out the best way to avoid future aggression. Of course, they aren’t going to get this perfectly right the next time and it will take a few times before they figure it out. Just remember to be consistent and they will eventually get it.

Sometimes, aggressive behavior is a result of a learning disability or something else going on. So, it is important to get them checked out and tested if you suspect something else is going on, or they are having a hard time coping with the big changes that Preschool brings.

Aggressive behavior is usually the result of poor impulse control. Teaching children new techniques on handling their anger can help them learn how to better control their anger.

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