Bad behaviour is often an effective way of gaining your attention, too. The time of greatest conflict will probably come at some stage during her third year, tear tantrums often go hand in hand with being two years old.
Dealing with Bad Behaviour: The golden rule is: Act quickly. Step in right away, and remove the source of the trouble- take away the food that’s being thrown, or the toy that’s being fought over, or pick your child up and remove her with a firm “NO”. At the same time distract their attention with some other activity or toy. You needn’t be angry or upset, just consistent, so your child gets the clear message that they are never allowed to behave in that way.
Some types of bad behavior, winging and whining, for example, are best by simply being ignored. If your child never manages to elicit a response from you, and is never allowed to win any arguments by such behavior, they will soon stop. Even tantrums are best ignored.
You may be able to divert their attention if you recognize one brewing, but once they throw themselves on the floor on a rage, just be calm and business like and carry on as normal. If necessary, put them outside the room until they calm down.
Rewards for Good Behavior: To your pre-school child, the best reward you can give is your time, attention and love. Praise, a cuddle, a story on your lap, admiring words-all these make your child feel good. It’s very easy to give your child most attention when they behave badly, and least when they behave well and you feel you can relax; you’re bound to react when you see them pulling the tins off when the shelves in the supermarket.
But rewarding her with praise and affection when she behaves well is much more effective: “What a good girl to wait here so patiently”, for example. You will encourage the behavior you want, and teach her a very useful lesson- that being nice to people works much better than being nasty to them.
Punishments: Whatever punishment you give, it has to be immediate if it is to have any effect. Threats of future action, perhaps the withdrawal of treats and privileges to come, are useless and unfair for young children-your child won’t understand why she is having this delayed punishment.