Aggressive Behaviour in Young Children
When children under the age of five behave aggressively towards one another it can be worrying, and knowing the best way to deal with it can be a challenge. However, aggressive behaviour in pre-schoolers is generally not labelled as ‘bullying’. This is because the under-fives tend not to act with intent, and will rarely understand the impact their actions may have on their peers.
Pre-schoolers are still developing socially, emotionally and cognitively, which means that aggressive behaviour is usually just a result of the frustration they feel from the lack of ability or language skills to properly express their feelings. Growing up can be extremely overwhelming and constantly processing such a wealth of new information can be tiring.
When young children are overtired, hungry or confused they often express their distress with pushing, biting, hitting, crying, or having a full on tantrum. At this age children are still developing empathy, respect and acknowledgement of others, so more often than not when another child becomes the target of this frustration it is purely circumstantial.
If you are worried about your child being aggressive, or being the target of aggression, you should always talk to your childcare centre or preschool.
A professional early learning service, such as our Cherry Bridge Station centres in NSW will have well-established systems for alleviating aggression and frustration, and will be more than happy to talk with you about your child’s progress.
Some of Our Tips & Tricks
- We have state-of-the-art play areas so children can have lots of play and exercise to let off steam.
- We have separate learning rooms for each age group, so they are more likely to share interests and energy levels.
- We provide rewarding play-based activities to keep children entertained.
- We encourage supervised sharing and teamwork.
- Our teachers (and parents) must be role models for good behaviour.
- We teach the children lots of age-appropriate social skills with positive guidance.
- We encourage parents to talk to the teachers and get regular updates on their child and discuss any behaviours we may need to work on.
- Our centres provide calm and spacious environments to promote a cheery atmosphere.
- We listen and offer support to all the children in our care, and their parents.
- We recognise good behaviour with positive praise.
- Our centres provide safe places for children to play and explore at their own pace, allowing them to exercise their natural curiosity.
- Healthy nutritious and delicious meals are cooked in our kitchens daily, so the children in our care are never grumpy because of empty bellies.