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Toddler keeps pushing smaller children over

(6 Posts)
SerBronn Wed 23-Mar-16 14:36:41

DS is 2.5 and goes to a crèche twice a week and a playgroup once a week.
The past few weeks he's been constantly picking on anyone smaller than him. Last week I watched him push a 1 year old little girl down and kick a crawling 10 month old. I told him off and he cried and didn't do it again that day.
Today I picked him up from the crèche and was told that he had been banned from the garden where everyone was playing because no matter how many times he was told off he kept pushing the little ones.
I've tried talking to him about hurting and he always says he won't do it but he continues. It's only me and him at home so he's not like it when we are at home.
I'm not really sure what to do about it as most of the time I'm not even there when it happens but It makes me feel like a crap parent. He's my first and I'm a lone parent so most of the time I feel like I'm making everything up as I go.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. grin

MaryThorne Wed 23-Mar-16 14:52:18

Have you tried the approach of getting him to feel empathy? With my DS of the same age the most effective way to stop him doing undesirable things is to ask him "how do you think X felt when you did that?" often he will say or if not will suggest "sad" (or whatever's appropriate), and also asking him how he would feel if someone did it to him.
We've also found Calmer, Happier, Easier Parenting by Noel Janis-Norton really effective especially the "descriptive praise" approach she describes. In a nutshell, this is commenting on the positive things children are doing in a way that isn't over the top but gives the message of what behaviour you want to see more of. Surprisingly, one of the things she recommends, commenting on something they are no longer doing wrong (e.g. "you're not pushing anyone now") does seem to be effective. Good luck with it! brew flowers

SerBronn Wed 23-Mar-16 15:08:16

I have tried asking how he thinks it makes other people feel but I'm not sure he's able to name emotions yet or feel any empathy. I have til how it makes people sad and he agrees that he wouldn't like to be pushed but he still continues to do it!
We are going to playgroup tomorrow so I'll definitely be giving the commenting on it when he isn't doing it thing a go, I think that could be a good approach for him. Thanks smile

MaryThorne Wed 23-Mar-16 15:11:31

Hope it goes well! You can also try commenting when he's doing positive things too at the playgroup e.g. sharing toys, taking turns. smile

waterrat Wed 23-Mar-16 16:34:30

its normal.

I would stop trying to go down the empathy route and jsut be very firm and show you dont like it. he will out grow it!

SerBronn Wed 23-Mar-16 17:13:00

Have tried being firm which has worked but he often does it when I'm not there.
I know he'll grow out of it, I'm just hoping to speed up the process grin I hoping it will stop when he goes to nursery in September and everyone is bigger/ the same size as him smile

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