Preschool Angst?

A sweet blonde-headed three year old girl sits on her tricycle, laughing as her brother zooms past on his bike. She tries to go after him, but the pedals just won’t turn. Her watchful mommy sees that all she needs is a little push from behind to get started. Instead of asking for help (which her mommy is trying to teach her to do) this angelic girl transforms into a growling, stomping, slapping, scowling kid. She hits her handlebars. She stomps her feet on the ground. She trashes her cute little head and growls her terrible growls.

Sometimes she stands up and attempts to throw her trike.

Acadia does things like this when she gets frustrated with things. I’d love ideas as to how to encourage better behavior. Any ideas?

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4 Responses to “Preschool Angst?”

  1. October 3, 2007 at 12:31 pm

    Maybe you could role play a few of her frustrating scenarios (at a time when she is board and in need of a game) to practice what to do. You could be the child who is having trouble and your son and daughter could “teach” you. We have had some success at my school with teachers role playing poor student behaviors and student volunteers modeling the correct behavior as skits.

  2. October 3, 2007 at 4:09 pm

    Ugh, I understand what you’re saying. I don’t have the answer, just a “me too.” My two-year-old is showing signs of this kind of behavior: he gets frustrated easily and he’s extremely impatient. I just try not to respond to it as much as I can. It’s hard. Good luck to you!

  3. October 6, 2007 at 9:07 pm

    We spent a year (when our daughter was two) asking ourselves this question every single day! It was one long year! I certainly don’t have any magic advice for you, but I will say pray for her and pray for wisdom. God promises to give it generously to all to ask.

    And for what it’s worth, you can try role playing. Try modeling your response to frustration for her – sort of talking out loud, sharing how you are feeling at a time when you are frustrated, letting her hear you pray or count or simply talk yourself down.

    Hang in there! 🙂

  4. October 7, 2007 at 11:36 pm

    We instituted a “We don’t speak whine” at our house…not sure if that helps but if you tell her you can’t understand what she needs while she is acting that way, maybe it would help? I cannot tell you it is working 100% of the time, in fact, we still get whining CONSTANTLY…we just won’t answer until they ask in a non whining voice. We have 4 children, 8, 6 and 3 year old twins. I hear ya and boy do I feel ya!!!

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