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8 Bad Habits ... and How to Help Kids Change Them

5 of 10

Breaking Toys

Fiddling with toys and breaking them may be your child’s way of getting your attention. To combat this expensive bad habit, downsize how many toys you have around the house so that your child learns to take care of the ones she has. If she breaks her sister’s toy, she has to do her chores to earn money for a replacement. And whatever you do, don’t replace your child’s broken toys—at least for as long as it takes for the message to sink in. If she can’t resist the urge to play rough, replace her more fragile toys with a couple of “fidget toys” to play with. Anything durable, from stress balls to rubber animals to silly putty, should fit the bill and get the impulse out of her system without enabling her destructiveness.