Behaviour Pattern 4

Biting and Hitting

Biting and hitting is heard of  many times in the kindergarten and the tots who do that are labelled as ‘An aggressive child.’

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Biting and Hitting  is very common with two year olds. Why do they bite :-

1 . It is a baby way of getting what they want. They could bite to get a toy they want.

2 . They could bite or hit in retaliation for being hurt.

3 . If the kids are still cutting teeth the biting could be a physical or a psychological urge. We often hear our elders say -‘Oh he\she is teething ,their gums must be scratching .Don’t worry too much.”

4 . Sometimes tots want to express their feeling and needs and don’t know how to do that and hence the hitting and biting.

5 . Tots learn quickly -as soon as they realise that by biting and hitting their needs can be easily satisfied they will tend to use this tool for a win win situation.

6 . The kid could be just trying to defend his turf.

If your tot tends to hit or bite please don’t blame yourself. Remember it does not mean your tot will grow up to be a bully.This behaviour need not be labelled as’ Bad Behaviour ‘. It is a part of growing up and needs to be handled with care.

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How can we deal with  hitting and biting :-

1 . Toddlers are not mature enough to understand reasoning so don’t  sit and ask “How would you like it if someone hits / bites you .” Toddlers can’t put themselves in another child’s place and reason.

2 . They can understand consequences- so don’t wait ,if he/she hits or bites take the child aside and tell him/her its wrong to hit anyone and if it happens again you can tell him/her that they can’t play with their friends.

3 . Try to find out the trigger point that makes the toddler aggressive -may be hunger or too much noise or crowd or maybe just a habit to get what is wanted.

4 . Praise the toddler when he is not aggressive and is sharing and caring.

5 . Sometimes they need a little cuddle. If the child is not settling then put him in your lap with face away from you. Tell him once he quietens he can go- and wait. Don’t forget the praise once he relaxes.

6 . A game of deep breathing and yoga can be played if things are a little unsettled.

7 . Be a role model – use the magic words sorry, please and thank you.Don’t force the child to use them – they will learn listening to you.

8 . If aggression continues it would be a good idea to talk to the parents and together you can solve the problem.

9 . Always be positive and work patiently -don’t give up – try different things.

Like I have mentioned earlier there is no magic method in bringing up children.

Have faith in yourself. You are doing a good job. Don’t forget to share and take advice from friends.

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