Guiding your child's behaviour in a positive and constructive way is the best approach. This means giving them attention and/or reward when they behave in a good manner, rather than focusing on punishment when they do something you deem as bad.

Tantrums are of course very common in kids aged one to three. This is mostly due to the fact a child's social and emotional skillset is only just beginning to develop and they don't have the words or control to express or manage big emotions.

Managing this behaviour is about understanding why your child is acting in this particular way, then responding accordingly.

Questions to ask yourself include:

  • Is your child well and getting enough sleep? Sometimes their tantrums, or challenging behaviour, is a sign they're tired. If you're unsure, check with their GP.

  • Has there been significant change to the family unit? A new baby can sometimes cause a bit of unrest.

  • Are they stress, hungry, and/or overstimulated? Any or all of these will make it harder for your child to manage their emotions and actions.

There are a number of behaviour management strategies you can choose to implement as a parent and it may take some trial and error to work out what's best for you, your child and your family. As always, if any concerns speak to your GP.

Sleep support

Speaking of tired toddlers, they need around 11-14 hours of sleep every day, usually broken up into 10-12 hours at night and one to two hours during the day.

Their sleep habits will change a lot from ages one to three.

According to Raising Children Network for example, "it can seem that toddlers are having trouble settling for sleep, getting to sleep or sleeping through the night, at least some of the time. And toddlers love to test their independence, so getting them to bed in the first place can be a challenge."

For extra help with setting a sleep routine, speak to your child's GP or paediatrician, but the general rule of thumb is a 7:30 pm bedtime, 7:00 am wakeup, and a maximum two-hour nap at 1:00 pm. Obviously life happens and this may not always go to plan, so don't worry, just do your best.

Around two to three years old is also when most children will move out of their cot and into a bed. There's no particular hurry, but if you're noticing them climbing out of their cot or needing to use the toilet at night, it's usually time for the cot-to-bed transition.


f you have any questions or need extra support, we're here to help you anytime in any language.

Article originally published by: Raising Children Network

Image credit: Helena Lopes on Unsplash, Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

All content is created and published for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health professional.

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