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Ten Ways To Help Control Aggression In Kids

ten ways to help control aggression in kids - mum telling angry daughter off
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Parenthood isn’t as easy as Stepford Wives would have us believe. It seems like everywhere you turn, a new issue appears. With that in mind, today I am sharing ten ways to help control aggression in kids. Before I continue, please note I am not a professional. If you have serious concerns regarding your child or someone you know, seek professional help.

Ten Ways To Help Control Aggression In Kids

My own children are 7 and 8 years old. So I’m basing these tips on my experiences as a parent, aunt and challenging teenager myself, way back when. Read on for ten ways to help control aggression in kids…

1). Limit Their Screen Time

We saw a huge improvement in our daughter’s behaviour and moods when we cut back her screen time. Instead of punishing her by taking it away, we now reward her good behaviour with screen time. This works so well for her. “Once you’ve read your school book, you can watch CBBC”, for example makes getting her to read her book much easier.

2). Consistency Is Critical

It’s important all parents or carers are doing the same thing. This way your child knows what’s expected of them. The same thing applies with consequences… If only one parent does this, the kids could quickly grow to dislike that parent.

3). Reward Good Behaviour

It’s so easy to fall into the pattern of only commenting on your child’s negative behaviour. I have been on the receiving end of this myself. It caused a lot of friction between my Mum and I when I was growing up. Remember to pay your child the occasional compliment and reward their good behaviour and their respect for you will increase.

4). Lead By Example

If you swear like a trooper, shout all the time or talk about aggression or violence in a positive manner, your child is likely to do the same. Threatening to hit your child (even if you never would) can have the same effects on them as the act itself. They’ll be fearful of you and may act out in frustration. They’ll also assume this threatened behaviour is an acceptable consequence.

Boy being bullied in school - Pinterest pin saying ten ways to help control aggression in kids

5). Talk To Your Child

Chances are, something is triggering their behaviour. Their aggression could be triggered by something you’re unaware of… Perhaps they are being bullied or are having other difficulties at school? Anxiety is a big problem for children now. Opening up the conversation is critical to find out what’s going on in your child’s life.

6). Recognise The Signs

It’s important that both you and your child recognise the signs of aggression. This can help you to diffuse the situation before it becomes out of hand. Everyone is different, but some signs to look out for include:

  • Increased heart rate
  • Muscles tensing
  • Clenching teeth and fists
  • Stomach Churning
  • Feeling hot

7). Diffusion Techniques

We all feel angry from time to time. So it’s important to teach your child how to deal with those feelings. These are good techniques to try to teach them. Counting to ten always worked for me, when I was growing up…

  • Counting to 10
  • Breathing slowly and deeply
  • Clenching and unclenching their fists to ease tension
  • Walking away from the situation
  • Going to a private place to calm down

8). Discuss Alternative Options

Once an aggressive instance has calmed down, ask your child what they could do differently next time they are in that situation. For example, if your child has punched their sister because she wouldn’t give him the remote… He could have left the room or asked you for support. By providing your child with another option, hopefully they’ll make a better choice the next time they are in a similar position.

mum talking to daughter about ten ways to help control aggression in kids

9). Don’t Place Blame

Aggression is something everybody needs to learn to control. Some people are better at it than others, but we all need the tools to succeed. If your child is aggressive, don’t blame them for it. Equally, blaming yourself is pointless too. Instead, focus your energy on providing your child with the tools and support they need to better control their aggression.

10). Seek Help If Required

If your child is still struggling to keep their temper in check, despite you both doing all of the above things, it’s time to ask for help. Speaking to their GP is a good place to start. The NHS have more ideas, so it’s worth reading those too. 

Finally, if these ten ways to help control aggression in kids have been useful, check out my parenting posts. 

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