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Old 04-12-2011, 05:48 AM
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Default Dealing With A Repeat Offender

I have a DCG (3.5) who is quite rough. She primarily picks on her little sister (not quite 2) but she hits/pushes/lays on/etc at least one other child per day. She is an attention seeking child by nature and likes to pick at anyone quietly doing their own thing instead of paying attention to her.

It's been a problem since her sister began walking at 14 months but has escalated the past few weeks. Younger sis has become very independent and basically wants nothing to do with big sis and it's driving her mad. I've been using timeouts and redirection but there was an incident yesterday that scared me so badly that I spoke with the parents last night and decided I had to try something different for the safety of the other children here.

I've placed small basket of toys in one of the naprooms which is close to our play area and I've told the kids anyone using their hands to be naughty will have to play alone so I can keep the other children safe. I gave warnings the first two times DCG hit today and the third time I places her in the "play alone" area. She went apepoop crazy. Screaming, kicking and threw herself on the floor. She screamed for 25 minutes before she stopped and at that point I went to calmly tell her that she was in the new play alone area because she was using her hands to hurt my friends. She fussed some more but stayed where she was asked and started playing after about 20 minutes. After 15 minutes of quiet playing I asked her if she thought she could keep her hands to herself and she said yes so I let her out. She was out for 25 minutes before she hit someone else with a toy and then threatened him not to cry or tell. I was right behind her. lol So back to the room and repeat the above reaction again.

Do you think this technique will work if I stick it out for a few days? She loathes not knowing what's going on and being in the middle of things so I though this would be a good and natural consequence for her. But I didn't expect the tantrums to be honest. She's not a screamer and I don't like that she's freaking...but on the other hand....maybe that means I've found the right thing for her.

They are a lovely family and great little girls. This is the only issue I have with either of them and it's jealousy based so I really want to sort it out.
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Old 04-12-2011, 06:22 AM
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Quote:
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I gave warnings the first two times DCG hit today and the third time I places her in the "play alone" area.
To be honest I would not have give her 2 chances/warnings not to hit. You know her well enough to know she will hit every day. I would say from now on ZERO chances/warnings.

I would give her parents notice to get on top of this or you will term.

Imagine how your other dc families feel about their children being hit and kicked.

I have a zero tolerance policy for violence here. My #1 job is to keep everyone safe in my care.
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Old 04-12-2011, 06:29 AM
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To be honest I would not have give her 2 chances/warnings not to hit. You know her well enough to know she will hit every day. I would say from now on ZERO chances/warnings.

I would give her parents notice to get on top of this or you will term.

Imagine how your other dc families feel about their children being hit and kicked.

I have a zero tolerance policy for violence here. My #1 job is to keep everyone safe in my care.
I think it sounds like you found the 'Hot Button' if she wants to get away with hitting without getting sent out.

I agree with the Zero tolerance at this point too. I would make sure to tell her that I am keeping everyone safe so you have to play alone, and I would do it to keep you safe too if someone was hitting you.
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Old 04-12-2011, 06:35 AM
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She was given warnings and normal timeouts the first two times...warnings that repeated behavior would mean time in the "time alone" spot. She didn't just get away with it.

It's not worth terming over espcially since most of the behavior is directed towards her sister not other people's children. She's a good girl except for the extreme jealously which comes out as hitting/pushing. She also can't stand other kids or adults talking to me at all. She has to be right there doing some trick to be the center of attention. She is the exact same way at home and they are tough on her.

Honestly terming won't solve anything. They'll go to a new provider who may not be as diligent as I am and little sis will be seriously hurt. I can't live with that on my mind. She smothered her sister yesterday to prevent her from telling for hitting. I KNEW something was up even though I was around the corner at the time from the sounds coming from little sis. Someone else....might not have realized until it was too late.
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Old 04-12-2011, 07:09 AM
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She was given warnings and normal timeouts the first two times...warnings that repeated behavior would mean time in the "time alone" spot. She didn't just get away with it.
Let's ask ourselves what are you teaching her?

IMO ....you are teaching her that it is ok to hit, kick, push twice a day. (because she isn't getting disciplined until the third strike.)

IMO .....you are teaching her it is ok to hit, kick, push if it "mostly" the little sister.

If this is what you are trying to teach her then by all means keeping on giving chances and warnings!

Would you want your own child to be hit/kicked/pushed around at school the way this child is treating her sister? SISTER OR NOT IT IS YOUR JOB TO KEEP EVERYONE SAFE!
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Old 04-12-2011, 07:22 AM
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Oh My Goodness! I would be terrified to watch that child. She is a bully and only 3.5 years old. What makes her a bully? Hitting other kids and then threatening them not to tell! There is no way I would watch her after she tried to "Smother" her little sitter. She is a huge liability that I wouldn't want to have on my hands. What happens if she really would hurt a child in your care? Her parents need to seek help for her! Where is she learning the behavior of telling the kids don't tell after I hurt you or I will hurt you more! I would not being worried about the time outs because it is time you take control of this situation and show her that while she is in your care you are the boss and she will not be permitted to hurt anyone. Please talk to the parents and encourage them to get some type of help for her before she really hurts a child.
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Old 04-12-2011, 07:24 AM
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She smothered her sister yesterday to prevent her from telling for hitting. I KNEW something was up even though I was around the corner at the time from the sounds coming from little sis. Someone else....might not have realized until it was too late.


18 years of child care and I haven't had a smothering attempt yet.
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Old 04-12-2011, 07:38 AM
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Where is she learning the behavior of telling the kids don't tell after I hurt you or I will hurt you more!
Scary! This one is a document,document,document situation if I ever saw one. You might even need to call parents for immediate pickup each time this happens.
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Old 04-12-2011, 07:52 AM
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If anyone would like to offer advice other than terming I'd appreciate it. She is not a demon and she doesn't get away with anything here. Her behavior is met with consequences immediately at here and at home. She is a very jealous and overbearing child who needs to learn that it's not all about her. This is specific behavior, she's fine and sweet the rest of the time....most of the time.

As for preventing her sister from telling I'm pretty sure most 3 year olds who have been disiplined for the same thing over and over would figure out that if the kids don't tell then there is no punishment. It's not rocket science especially for a very intelligent child.

The parents are mortified and I'm trying to find a solution and teach this little girl to control herself and that its ok to not be the center of attention all the time. I GET that her behavior is over the top.....but I'm not looking for speculation about her future behavior and how I'm putting other kids in danger. All of the parents know how this little one is.....so asking me how parents would feel if they knew is not constructive either. They are always supervised and I have never had a serious injury. In fact the times I've had to use bandaids in the past few years is probably less than 10 times.
Sorry if I'm defensive but I thought twice about posting given the trend to only give the advice to TERM TERM TERM. I was hoping someone had something constructive to offer.

Everything is documented and Dad and I speak at lunch everyday. We've ALL been working together on her behavior for months with success. It was this incident yesterday that made me think I needed to do something more. For the record....she was beside herself once she understood she could have really hurt her sister. She has huge remorse. I'm rambling now....
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Old 04-12-2011, 08:04 AM
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Sorry if I'm defensive but I thought twice about posting given the trend to only give the advice to TERM TERM TERM. I was hoping someone had something constructive to offer.
I tend to agree....I wouldn't term. Thank God the parents seem to be mortified and really trying to work with you. Sometimes that's all you need for a breakthrough...is for the parents to support you and for the child to NOT be psychotic!!! JMHO
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Old 04-12-2011, 08:08 AM
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I have a dck age 3 that will out of no where have this type of behavior. then for weeks she will be fine. She is an only child, then back again.

then I have another dck age 3.5 with a sibling age 2. the 3.5 was always super mellow and a great little student. When the sibling age 2 started joining us in our class room all Hell broke lose. the 3.5 year old started acting just like the child that you are describing. It went on for almost a month or so and now is back to normal..

I really think that the older of the two did not like the fact that the sibling was now able to comepte with the older and the younger was getting more attention in the classroom.
there would be times that I would have to place the 3.5 year old in a safe spot where the DCK would scream, kick, spit, and just act a fool. When the dck is in the safe spot free from harming anyone, I just walk away into the next room, but still have an eye on the kid.

I also never excluded the 3.5 year old and would just tell them that hitting is not ok, have them sit and think for a min. Timeout was a word that sent this kid crazy, so I would just ask the kid to sit and chill out for a bit. I do a lot of explaining to children starting at the age of 2. I think that for some kids timeouts just dont do anything for them. Also the 1 min per age is a crock, or at least i think it is. The kid needs enough time to really calm down and 3.5 minutes is not going to be enough time.

Honestly, I have learned not to put so much attention to the badly behaved attention seekers. I feel it does become a game for them and when we respond they win.

One of the things that I started doing was really pay attention to the one that got attacked. The attacker would be told, hitting is not ok, we don't hurt our friends. How do you think your friend/sibling feels? Then ignor the attacker. give zero attention. Let them go on with what they are doing and when they try to talk to you, ignor them again. Also be sure that you say loud enough how sad the victim is and how hurt they feel, and repeat over and over how DCK was not nice to hit you, hitting really hurts.... I guess waht I am saying is really go out of your way to make the attacker feel bad for what they did.

I find that having attention seekers get removed from the group sometimes makes things worse, not better.

I know that no two kids are the same and that while this may have worked for me, it may not work for others...but i thought that I would share.
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Old 04-12-2011, 08:13 AM
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Where would the child be learning this behavior?

Is their domestic violence in the home?!

Have you talked to the parents to find out if its going on at home?

Do they have suggestions for you?

Sibling rivalry starts out at a young age. I wouldn't attribute it to much more than that unless other children are afraid of her too.

Enforcement of the rules, consequences, etc is a good idea. Let her know you mean business right when she gets dropped off. Offer rewards if it helps! OR If its at all possible, keep them separated as much as you can. Split off the room if you can and permit older kids in one area and younger kids in another area. That might help the cause.

I think I would discuss with the parents first and fore most and see what their take on the situation is or what (if anything) they are doing at home.

Personally, it it doesn't get nipped in the bud and NOW, you are going to have a liability on your hands!!!
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Old 04-12-2011, 08:16 AM
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Meyou,

If you would like... I can call you and give you a plan for her. It takes about three weeks to solve this but it takes some work.

You can p.m. me through here with a time and your phone number and I'll help you.
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Old 04-12-2011, 08:25 AM
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Just for the record I have never termed for hitting, kicking, biting, pushing!

Why?.... I have had one incident of this behavior in 7 years! Why?.... because I watch 'em like a hawk and diffuse situations before they escalate.

I stand by my advice...

1) no more warnings/chances.:-) before sending her to her separate play zone.
2) let the parents know that they need to have a heart to heart with their lil darling.

"daycare" is correct about giving lots of sympathy to the victim.

Good luck....take my advice or leave it....I am just saying what has worked well for me.
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Old 04-13-2011, 12:21 PM
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Thank you for the advice everyone. I stepped away from my thread for a day to digest all points of view.

Today was much better. Instead of several incidents where she was mean or used her hands to make her point there were two and both were very mild compared to normal. First thing this morning she used her hands to remove her sister's hands from a toy (gently but still wrong) and about 10 minutes ago (end of day here) she taunted her sister to chase her and then closed a door on her. Other than that she tried really hard to be nice and I "caught" her stopping herself once from using her hands. She didnt see me but she went to reach for something someone had and then changed her mind and got up for another toy.

Both times she went to Time Alone on her own and there was a tantrum this morning but none this afternoon. Today might be a fluke but I feel postive again about fixing my little miss with some hard work.

Nannyde - I'll gladly take you up on some advice. I haven't been on the board long but I value your opinion already. Pming you now.
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Old 04-13-2011, 12:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Meyou View Post
Thank you for the advice everyone. I stepped away from my thread for a day to digest all points of view.

Today was much better. Instead of several incidents where she was mean or used her hands to make her point there were two and both were very mild compared to normal. First thing this morning she used her hands to remove her sister's hands from a toy (gently but still wrong) and about 10 minutes ago (end of day here) she taunted her sister to chase her and then closed a door on her. Other than that she tried really hard to be nice and I "caught" her stopping herself once from using her hands. She didnt see me but she went to reach for something someone had and then changed her mind and got up for another toy.

Both times she went to Time Alone on her own and there was a tantrum this morning but none this afternoon. Today might be a fluke but I feel postive again about fixing my little miss with some hard work.

Nannyde - I'll gladly take you up on some advice. I haven't been on the board long but I value your opinion already. Pming you now.
wow sounds good.... Also, when you see the DCG doing something good like stopping herself from using her hands, do everything you can to make a great deal out of this and how wonder it is... Praise her like she is the best thing in the world. Heck, make an announcement to all of the kids...say WOW everyone did you see Kimmy, she did such a wonderful job not using her hands or ___________. Yeah horray for kimmy. get all of the kids to clap, Show her that she will get attention this way instead...........
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Old 04-13-2011, 12:41 PM
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I've been doing that and she eats it up. I guess in a way its giving her what she wants since she craves attention... But if praising her for every little thing helps her be gentle I'm all for it. I'm a huge praise giver anyway. I really encourage and expect the kids to be independant and praise is such a good motivator to get them to practice skills like dressing and doing unfun chores like playroom pickup.

She really did have an excellent day. The best in several months I'm pretty sure. She was also better last night at home with their new Time Alone table. They're very good at working on things together. I'm lucky that way.
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Old 04-13-2011, 12:43 PM
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I've been doing that and she eats it up. I guess in a way its giving her what she wants since she craves attention... But if praising her for every little thing helps her be gentle I'm all for it. I'm a huge praise giver anyway. I really encourage and expect the kids to be independant and praise is such a good motivator to get them to practice skills like dressing and doing unfun chores like playroom pickup.

She really did have an excellent day. The best in several months I'm pretty sure. She was also better last night at home with their new Time Alone table. They're very good at working on things together. I'm lucky that way.
sounds like you are great at your job..... I am so happy that we have each other to consult about issues we are having... I bet our husbands love it too, cuz now they dont have to hear it....lol
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Old 04-13-2011, 01:07 PM
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It sounds like you are doing a great job OP. Kids do crazy stuff sometimes and especially sibling sets. My girls are awful to each other on occasion and they do not watch violent shows or see any of that activity in real life. If you love this family and this is the only issue with these girls and the parents are cooperating with a plan of action, it sounds like you have the ideal set up to really curb the behavior. It is very easy for us to say just term them but things are much more complex in real life.
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