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Behaviour – Parenting Support

If problem behaviour is causing you or your child distress, or upsetting the rest of the family, it’s important to deal with it.

Do what feels right – What you do has to be right for your child, yourself and the family. If you do something you do not believe in or that you do not feel is right, it probably will not work. Children notice when you do not mean what you’re saying.

Do not give up – Once you’ve decided to do something, continue to do it. Solutions take time to work.

Be consistent – Children need consistency. If you react to your child’s behaviour in one way one day and a different way the next, it’s confusing for them. It’s also important that everyone close to your child deals with their behaviour in the same way.

Try not to overreact – This can be difficult. When your child does something annoying time after time, your anger and frustration can build up. It’s impossible not to show your irritation sometimes, but try to stay calm.

Talk to your child – Encourage them to explain why they’re angry or upset. This will help them feel less frustrated.

Be positive about the good things – When a child’s behaviour is difficult, the things they do well can be overlooked. Tell your child when you’re pleased about something they’ve done. You can let your child know when you’re pleased by giving them attention, a hug or a smile.

Offer rewards – You can help your child by rewarding them for good behaviour. For example, praise them or give them their favourite food for tea. If your child behaves well, tell them how pleased you are. Be specific. Say something like, “Well done for putting your toys back in the box when I asked you to.”