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5 year old hitting at nursery

(8 Posts)
FoxPass Tue 21-May-13 18:42:23

My 5 yo DS1 has hit 3 friends in the last month at nursery. He is in his pre-school year and will go to school in August. Today he burst another boy's nose sad

This is completely out of character for him and I'm at a total loss. Nothing has changed in his life so I can't work out where this is coming from. He watches Power Rangers, Ben 10 and superheroes but not excessively. He is very articulate with no problem expressing himself in words.

I asked him why and got "don't know" about 100 times then he said they were playing chase and "just hit him". He got time-out and kept in at playtime. He apologised to the other boy and also to me.

He has a younger brother who is 2 who at the moment is rough with him, trying to bite and hit, but me and DH deal with this best we can and are consistent in the message that hitting is not OK and unacceptable. Could this be why he is doing it?

What is the best way to address this? He is no grounded and favourite toy confiscated and we've had a chat about WHY it's not acceptable. Each time I have thought he has got the message so I am shocked when he does it again.

What else can I do? Is this normal? I'm so angry at him as he knows better and is at all other times a good boy. Right now he is tearful and upset at being grounded.

LoveBeingUpAt4InTheMorning Wed 22-May-13 06:31:13

He dd who is 5 is also on the receiving end of some terrible behavior by her 20 mth old brother. So I can see it being a reaction to that if your little one is even half as bad as mine.

My dd was told off for biting at school, turned out they'd been playing a biting game that the other girl had started (and my dd finished!) so it's worth checking it was a game that got out of hand.

stainesmassif Wed 22-May-13 07:39:24

Testosterone surge? 4.5 yr old ds1 is in a similar situation. Obsessed with guns, Spider-Man, zombies. Do they have to learn about fighting??

I think you just have to be consistent with your message and be prepared that it wont necessarily get better over night. If he really likes those programmes maybe ban them for a week after another incident. Oh, and reward any incidents of kindness to other children.

Smudging Wed 22-May-13 07:49:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

wonkylegs Wed 22-May-13 08:05:19

I agree about the programmes on telly I'm afraid. But you also need to combine education (hitting/fighting is wrong), perseverance (it takes a million goes for it to sink in) & punishment (they know the difference between right & wrong at this age) - yes I know this is stating the obvious but it's easier said than done effectively.
DS is just about to turn 5 and is pretty typical boy but at school he has been hit quite a few times by other boys in his class - funnily enough it's always the same kids, whose parents don't tell them off for it and they are all heavily into transformers, star wars, ben 10 and want to play fighting with guns & swords. I think they find it's easy to blur the line between fiction & reality at this age. For example DS believes that all adverts are the gospel truth. hmm
DS has never hit back so far (he's no angel by any means but I'm proud of this) despite being a big & physical lad.
We find effective punishments are no iPad, no TV or not going out on our bike rather than toys (as there is always another toy)

mummy2benji Wed 22-May-13 10:00:59

I have a couple of friends who use a sticker chart for rewarding good behaviour - or removing a sticker for bad behaviour. It seems to work quite well as the boys apparently do get upset if they have to have a sticker removed, and are proud of themselves if they gain one. Might be worth trying?

I do also agree with the kids' tv programs. Ds1 (4.5yo) isn't allowed to watch power rangers, ben 10, spiderman or any of those programs. He is allowed to watch Scooby Doo, as the threat is so cartoony and tongue in cheek that he doesn't find it scary. All boys like to play at superheroes and fighting anyway so I don't think they need encouragement in this. We let ds1 watch a couple of episodes of power rangers about 6 months ago, and he suddenly started pretending to do kung fu moves and lots of "ha-YA!" We stopped him watching it and that settled down.

The younger sibling issue is a hard one though, but I guess all you can do is make sure that he sees that his younger brother is told off and disciplined when he hits him. So long as he sees you giving the message that it isn't okay for his brother to hit him, you're reinforcing the point that all hitting is bad. We started using the 'naughty mat' (un-pc terminology oops!) for ds1 when he was 2yo and it worked brilliantly.

FoxPass Wed 22-May-13 12:22:04

Thanks all. He eventually told DH that he had been playing chase with the wee boy and he was shouting "Cheater! Cheater!" over and over at him and he hit him.

So we have been talking to him about ignoring and walking away when someone is winding us up like that. He was good today so hopefully no more of it! smile

FoxPass Wed 22-May-13 12:25:58

Yes I agree re. Power Rangers and Ben 10. They make an immediate difference in his behaviour so we've decided to stop him watching them. He plays violently after watching them!

We grounded him last night, so DH took DS2 out a walk after dinner and he wasn't allowed to go, and that really got through to him, he didn't like it one bit!

We are going to do a reward chart with stickers too as we want to encourage him to tidy after himself a bit now too.

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