Kicking, biting, throwing chairs....

Posted by Barbara F. Meltz  September 26, 2011 06:00 AM

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article

My 5yrd granddaughter lives with us and recently her behavior has got really bad at school kicking, throwing chairs, biting, hitting the teacher. please help!

From: Betty, Clay City


Dear Betty,

Kicking, biting, throwing chairs....? These are off-the-bell-curve tantrums, that is, they are not behaviors typical to childhood.

You write that her behavior "recently" has gotten "really bad." I take that to mean it was always bad and recently has gotten worse. Has something happened to make them escalate, some event or stress that has caused anger, upset and/or disappointment? Did someone (a parent?) promise something (to visit?) and then not deliver? Has she been moved around? Is someone dying? Is her life chaotic? Unpredictable? Does she have difficulty meeting the social, behavioral or academic expectations of the classroom? Ask the teachers for insight or advice? Even if you are unhappy with the teachers, you need whatever help you can get to figure out what's going on for her, so don't dismiss what the school says.

The behaviors you are describing warrant a professional evaluation. Your pediatrician and school psychologist are two good starting points.

This blog is not written or edited by Boston.com or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article

3 comments so far...
  1. My son exhibited this type of behavior when he was less than 2 (before he could talk very well). It prompted me to look more closely at his day care provider and I found out that she was mistreating him. I removed him from her care, filed a complaint that was substantiated by the state and put him in the care of a close friend. It took a few weeks, but he was soon back to the happy, playful child he had been prior.

    I would look closely at any changes in her life in the past few months. She may not be able to articulate her feelings very well, so she is acting on them. Does she have a new teacher? New day care? babysitter? move recently? I think you are probably better able to pinpoint the source of her stress than you may think. Once you have, you can work toward helping her. It may take some time, but the answers are there somewhere.

    Good luck.

    Posted by Cheryl September 26, 11 11:05 AM
  1. I remember reading an article describing similar behaviors that were traced to food allergies. It's worth checking out.

    Posted by patches02 September 27, 11 06:41 AM
  1. My 6 yr old grandson lives with us and has a hard time at school (in 1st grade) not wanting to do his work and disrupting the class. All I can say is keep in contact with the teacher, the cousellor and get a child therapist! I'm hoping to get to the bottom of his troubles quickly as he is so special to me as I'm sure your granddaughter is to you!

    Posted by Connie Prunty October 24, 11 07:00 PM
 
3 comments so far...
  1. My son exhibited this type of behavior when he was less than 2 (before he could talk very well). It prompted me to look more closely at his day care provider and I found out that she was mistreating him. I removed him from her care, filed a complaint that was substantiated by the state and put him in the care of a close friend. It took a few weeks, but he was soon back to the happy, playful child he had been prior.

    I would look closely at any changes in her life in the past few months. She may not be able to articulate her feelings very well, so she is acting on them. Does she have a new teacher? New day care? babysitter? move recently? I think you are probably better able to pinpoint the source of her stress than you may think. Once you have, you can work toward helping her. It may take some time, but the answers are there somewhere.

    Good luck.

    Posted by Cheryl September 26, 11 11:05 AM
  1. I remember reading an article describing similar behaviors that were traced to food allergies. It's worth checking out.

    Posted by patches02 September 27, 11 06:41 AM
  1. My 6 yr old grandson lives with us and has a hard time at school (in 1st grade) not wanting to do his work and disrupting the class. All I can say is keep in contact with the teacher, the cousellor and get a child therapist! I'm hoping to get to the bottom of his troubles quickly as he is so special to me as I'm sure your granddaughter is to you!

    Posted by Connie Prunty October 24, 11 07:00 PM
add your comment
Required
Required (will not be published)

This blogger might want to review your comment before posting it.

About the author

Barbara F. Meltz is a freelance writer, parenting consultant, and author of "Put Yourself in Their Shoes: Understanding How Your Children See the World." She won several awards for her weekly "Child Caring" column in the Globe, including the 2008 American Psychological Association Print Excellence award. Barbara is available as a speaker for parent groups.

Submit a question for Barbara's Mailbag


Ask Barbara a question

Barbara answers questions on a wide range of topics, including autism, breastfeeding, bullying, discipline, divorce, kindergarten, potty training, sleep, tantrums, and much, much more.

Send your questions to her at:
meltzbarbara (at) gmail.com.
Please include your name and hometown.
Moms
All parenting discussions
Discussions

High needs/fussy baby

memes98 writes "My 10.5 month old DS has been fussy ever since he was born, but I am getting very frustrated because I thought he would be much better by now...has anyone else been through this?"

More community voices

Corner Kicks

Dirty Old Boston

Mortal Matters

On Deck

TEDx Beacon Street

RSS feed


click here to subscribe to
Child Caring

archives