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kindergartener being violent


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#1 carolleigh

Posted 22 February 2013 - 08:52 PM

Why would a little 5 yo boy suddenly start showing aggression to classmates and peers and how do I respond to it?
It is in the form of kicking and punching and seems unprovoked and random. He seems to find it amusing and despite warnings and threats it continues. We have talked about keeping hands to ourselves and gone through the empathetic reasoning but to no avail. He has been at big school 3 weeks and is beginning to become known for all the wrong reasons.

How should I manage it? What to do from here?

#2 cinnabubble

Posted 22 February 2013 - 09:08 PM

Can you approach his teacher and seek her advice?

#3 baddmammajamma

Posted 23 February 2013 - 11:48 AM

Hi carolleigh:

I'm sure this is very stressful for you!

The first thing I'd be doing is sitting down with your son's teacher, as cinnabubble suggested, and seeing if he/she has any insights and suggestions. I imagine that most experienced teachers of young children have seen behavior like this from some kids.

Does your son have a "currency?" I took a quick check of your post history & it sounds like he's a dinosaur fan. Perhaps you can put together some VERY simple behavioral guidelines (with him & his teacher), like 3-4 core, easy to understand goals. Reward with dinosaur stickers for every period of school that he follows the rules. Reinforce with a small treat (doesn't have to be food or a toy -- could be time together in the pool, or computer time, etc.) either at the day if he reaches a certain level. Both you & the teacher should try to "catch him being good" and praise him for THAT behavior regularly.

On a different note, have you ever consulted with a good developmental paediatrician or child psych? I ask because it seems you've voiced concerns in the past about defiant/unmanageable behavior -- I appreciate that it's so hard to tell what's normal "bad" behavior in a 3, 4, 5 year old -- but at the same time, it would be a shame for your son to get a reputation for all the wrong reasons if there are actually underlying causes for his behavior. I offer this with my "ADHD Mum" hat on. original.gif  

I have found that schools & teachers can be very collaborative when they feel as if the parents are aware of/concerned about their child's poor behavior and have an open mind about the possibility of other issues (rather than just saying "Oh, boys will be boys" or "The teacher should know how to address this.")

Good luck sorting everything out. I hope your son settles in well soon.


#4 DrFeral

Posted 23 February 2013 - 01:35 PM

BMJ is right on this one (as she usually is). I've seen similar behaviour end up with a diagnosis which really improved things for the child and their family. Not saying that this is your little boy's issue but that you should work with your child's teacher to work out what is happening before it gets any worse.

#5 elizabethany

Posted 23 February 2013 - 01:53 PM

Have there been any repercussions for his violence?  Warnings and threats only work if they are followed through.

As there are no obvious triggers, I would look at either a medical condition (including psych), or if there needs to be a change in parenting techniques.




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