Behaviour

Filter by age

How can I teach my child to share?

You only have to watch young children at play to know…

6-12 mths 12-18 mths 18-24 mths 2-3 yrs 3-4 yrs 4-5 yrs

Handling meltdowns

Meltdowns are a reaction to feeling overwhelmed – for instance, when…

6-12 mths 12-18 mths 18-24 mths 2-3 yrs 3-4 yrs 4-5 yrs

Understanding behaviour

Young children are like tiny scientists: they quickly learn that doing…

0-6 mths 6-12 mths 12-18 mths 18-24 mths 2-3 yrs 3-4 yrs 4-5 yrs

How should I respond to challenging behaviour?

Just as praise encourages your toddler to repeat good behaviours, not…

18-24 mths 2-3 yrs 3-4 yrs 4-5 yrs

Why does my child bite or hit others?

Babies and toddlers may use biting and hitting to explore the…

0-6 mths 6-12 mths 12-18 mths 18-24 mths 2-3 yrs 3-4 yrs 4-5 yrs

Coping with tantrums

Tantrums can be exhausting – for you and your child –…

12-18 mths 18-24 mths 2-3 yrs 3-4 yrs 4-5 yrs

How do I teach good behaviour?

Good behaviour doesn’t happen automatically – it’s a learned response. The…

0-6 mths 6-12 mths 12-18 mths 18-24 mths 2-3 yrs 3-4 yrs 4-5 yrs

The benefits of playtime

Play gives children the opportunity to learn who they are, what…

0-6 mths 6-12 mths 12-18 mths 18-24 mths 2-3 yrs 3-4 yrs 4-5 yrs

How can I reward good behaviour?

Everyone loves getting praise – but children need cues to connect…

0-6 mths 6-12 mths 12-18 mths 2-3 yrs 3-4 yrs 4-5 yrs

How can I get my child to do what I ask?

Clear instructions and boundaries help children learn how to behave. These…

0-6 mths 6-12 mths 12-18 mths 18-24 mths 2-3 yrs 3-4 yrs 4-5 yrs
Back

Behaviour

How can I get my child to do what I ask?

Clear instructions and boundaries help children learn how to behave. These tips can help.

  • Get your child’s attention and make eye contact. Try not to yell instructions from another room – if you’re busy, ask them to come to you first.
  • Have a clear idea what you want them to do, then explain it simply. Remember to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’, if that’s what you’d like your child to do, too.
  • Give one task or request at a time, and let them finish it before giving further instructions.
  • Give your child time to process instructions – this can be up to 10-15 seconds or longer.
  • Check they’ve heard and understood what you want them to do: ask them to repeat the request back to you.
  • Praise your child while they’re doing the task and let them know how pleased you are when they’re finished.
  • It’s quite normal for children to refuse to do what they’re asked. Give a warning, and let them know there’ll be a consequence. Remember to follow through with the consequence if you need to!

Why does my child always say no?

‘No’ is an easy word to say, so it’s not surprising it’s one of the first that children learn. It’s also a word that brings a lot of joy, as they realise they can choose whether or not to do what you say!

Try to offer limited choices where reasonable, to give your child a sense of control. If you often say no to requests, ask yourself why. Could you say ‘Yes’ more often, or offer a choice instead, i.e., “we can do some painting after you’ve had dinner”?

Want more advice or support?

You can talk via online chat to our family support workers and get advice specific to your situation and your family.

Visit www.actionforchildren.org.uk/talk

Description of what parents can talk about in the 1:1 online chat service

Share


Do you want to live chat with our parenting staff to get one to one support?

Yes please