Jun 01 2024


  • Judith Osuoha School Admin
  • 11713

Dealing with difficult or defiant behavior from your kids can be one of the toughest parts of parenting. Whether they're refusing to put on their shoes or throwing epic tantrums, you might often feel at a loss for how to respond effectively.

Here’s how to handle it:

Define Behaviors Clearly: Be specific about what behaviors are expected and what aren’t. Instead of vague terms like "acting up" or "being good," use clear descriptions like "running around the room" (bad) or "starting homework on time" (good). This way, everyone knows exactly what’s expected.

Build a Strong Parent-Child Relationship: A strong relationship is the foundation for managing behavior. Your child will be more likely to listen and cooperate if they care about what you think and feel.

Spend Quality Time Together: Regularly spend time with your child that isn’t focused on correcting behavior. Play, talk, and do activities together. The more loved and understood your child feels, the easier it will be to manage their behavior.

Set Clear Rules: Clearly define and stick to your rules. Avoid lumping multiple rules together, especially for younger kids. Make one clear statement, and the younger the child, the more precise you need to be.

Use Positive Reinforcement: Whenever your child behaves as expected, use positive reinforcement. This could be verbal praise, playing a game together, or a trip to the park. Avoid using material rewards like toys. Reinforcement should help build self-esteem and cooperation.

Establish Consequences: For rules that aren’t followed despite positive reinforcement, set consequences. These should be realistic, match the nature of the offense, and ideally teach something. Consistently enforce these consequences. Start small and gradually increase the severity for repeated offenses. Use natural consequences when possible, like having your child work to replace something they’ve broken.

These techniques can provide a roadmap to calmer, more consistent ways to manage problem behaviors and help your children develop the skills they need to regulate their own behaviors.

Leave a Reply