Lllcp0129 asks:

My 4 year old is out of control! She seems to get worse everyday. Her behavior and tantrums are driving me crazy!

My four year old daughter is getting out of control and I don't know how to stop it. She talks back, throws these wild tantrums out of nowhere and just seems to like getting into trouble. When she doesnt get her way she talks back and doesn't stop screaming. I've tried everything- timeouts, taking things away, talking it out...it seems like nothing works with her....it's just to the point where I'm at my wits end....I need some advice.
In Topics: Discipline and behavior challenges
> 60 days ago



Boys Town National Hotline
Aug 28, 2012
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What the Expert Says:

Age four is a tough age for a lot of parents because most four year olds are wanting to show their independence and they test their boundaries. Keep firm on your boundaries with her and keep teaching appropriate behaviors the best you can.

There is a lot of learning going on and developing to be done at this age and it is a parent's job to teach and reteach the social skills that are needed. This would include following instructions and accepting decisions that are given. You can teach these skills by practicing them everyday. Make practice fun by playing games like "Simon Says" and "Mother May I".

Break the skills down to using three things:
1. Look
2. Say
3. Do

You want her to look at you and say "okay" and go do it right away. So you can tell her to grab her pink bag, say okay and then go do it. Praise immediately like crazy or offer a small extra snack or treat when she does what she is supposed to and when she argues or does not do the task, we would suggest stop the negative behavior by telling her what she is doing and what she should be doing. Then issue her consequence like giving a time out( 1 minute for each year in age) or the loss of a certain activity (no favorite television, or play time).Give the instruction again and then praise when she does. Keep teaching those skills over and over. Keep your boundaries strong and do your best to keep your patience by walking away and taking time to cool off.

We hope it helps and if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.

Boys Town National Hotline

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