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  1. #1
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    Tantrums at Drop Off

    Okay, I have a boy who has been with me for almost a year. He will be two in January. For the last week he has been crying at drop off. It is because he is mad that his dad is leaving him. For the first couple of days I tried to comfort him, but he doesn't want anything to do with me, so I have been letting him cry at the door. However, it bothers the other children so today I moved him to a playpen in the next room as today's tantrum has now gone on for 20 mins. Well, he stopped crying after a few mins but when I went in to see if he was ready to join the others, he started up again. So, finally I moved him back into the playroom (I didn't want him to fall asleep in the playpen) but put him in the corner and told him when he was ready to join the others he could come play.
    Is there anything else I can do, or do differently in order to help him calm down? He literally got himself so worked up from screaming that he was doing the gag cough, like he was going to throw up.

    On a side note this boy and his brother (twins) have recently got into this little drama king habit where if anyone takes a toy/hits/ does something they don't like they instantly throw themselves on the ground and cry. Also, if something happens to one, the other generally joins the other one crying. Lol... Generally I wait until they have calmed down to address the issue as I dont want them to continue with this behaviour, but other than that I'm at a loss.

  2. #2
    Euphoric ! bright sparks's Avatar
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    At this age and after so long with you, they know the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behaviour. But that being said, they are no doubt amidst the terrible two stage. I would nip it in the bud QUICKLY. would tell them it is inapproprate behaviour, maybe try counting to three after you have asked them to stop and if this doesnt work, then time out all the way. If there aren't consequences, then they will keep doing it and won't learn. This is probably just a touch stage in their development and it's to be expected. I don't think you can necessarily reason with them, so you just have to not stand for it. Dad needs to back you up 100% by not standing for it either. I wouldn't cuddle them and play into it while they are busy screaming and acting out. Once they have calmed down, reassure them that Dad is at work earning pennies and will be back to pick them up at the end of the day. It may be a difficult time and seem like you arent getting anywhere with it, but with consistancy and persiverance, they will work through this difficult stage. This sounds like a hard-ass approach, but it's just about being firm and dealing with this quickly rather than it getting worse and worse as they get more and more attention. I would still give them lots of love with kisses, cuddles and giggles, but not in response to this behaviour. I don't think it helps in the long run. Just my opinion.

  3. #3
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    Thanks bright sparks. I agree they need a tough love approach, but thought maybe I was being insensitive.

  4. #4
    Euphoric ! bright sparks's Avatar
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    No. I don't think you are insensitive. When I read my post back, it seems very hard, but its factual. It's all in the way you deliver this to the child and we all know how much they play us and wrap us around their little finger so it's about nipping ti in the bud before it becomes a bigger problem than it already is. Good Luck

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  6. #5
    Euphoric ! mimi's Avatar
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    I agree with bright sparks. The firm setting of behavior boundries and then when all is calm reward with lots of positive reinforcement including hugs. They are not too young to understand when you place them in the play pen and tell them when they stop crying they can play. It is up to them how long they are sequestered.

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  8. #6
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    Hey, I had a boy in care for over 3 years that I called the Drama King! He put on Oscar winning performances for his parents every morning and every evening but all day he followed my rules and behaved and knew what I expected from him in the way of good behaviour. He went through stages where he would stop for a while then he would start up again. I tried and tried to give the parents good tips about expecting better behaviour from him, but there's only so much we can do. As long as they are behaving well all day at daycare, that's the important part. I feel for you!

  9. #7
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    I wouldn't be too worried about it. I would celebrate his crying. Give him a good round of applause and a big fat cheesy grin all the way to the playpen. Let him have some "me" time and don't take him out until he can settle himself. If he winds back up when he sees you then put him back and start over.

    He's two and a human being. He is just expressing his little feelings. I think that's a great thing. The only issue with expressing them with crying is that crying is loud so it's best for him to have an area where he can be loud without affecting the listening ears of you, your children, and the other kids.

    We put way too much stake in crying. Instead of trying to get it to stop... I say cheer it on and celebrate. Give him some finger snapping a round of intense clapping and smile smile smile. Have the other kids join in. Maybe a little dance moves.... and a wooot wooot wooot. Praise him for being the best cryer ... "you cry GREAT little buddy. Get your cry on"

    It's the opposite reaction he's used to... he'll get the picture quick like that you don't mind a bit if he expresses his little feelings.
    Last edited by daycarewhisperer; 11-15-2012 at 01:03 PM.
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  11. #8
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    I like Daycarewhisperer's suggestion...it will likely shock him out of the crying and he'll forget that he was crying My suggestion was going to be distraction. Can you pull out something favourite or a new and different activity during that time? I have a boy who just turned two, who has been with me for 2 months now and he cries and clings to his mom most mornings although he is fine all day (he's just a mama's boy). I pay no attention to the tantrum, but pull out an activity that I know he will love, like some puzzles, some lacing buttons, playdough, etc and start setting the kids up with it...he is at the table in a flash and forgets about the crying after mama thing I think sometimes punishing the behaviour just makes it worse as it is giving him attention for it...negative attention is still attention. Sometimes a little creativity like what Daycarewhisperer mentioned, works wondered

  12. #9
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    I think there's a difference between a child expressing his feelings and child who is crying to get his way. I think separating him is a good idea but I would never applaud crying. I get the whole distraction thing but there is no way I am going to cheer on a child in the middle of a tantrum. I think Bright Sparks was bang on.

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  14. #10
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    I have to agree with Mustbenuts and Bright Sparks. Hell will freeze over before I applaud or cheer on a temper tantrum.

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