Updated: Aug 9, 2021
Many early childhood experts write about how to prevent a child from becoming angry and that's a great thing but you also need a strategy for when they do become angry.
Here's a collection of my 16 best tips for calming angry children derived from over 43 years of providing care and education to children and their parents. Also important, but not quite as impressive, are my BA in education and MA in human development.
All of my ideas are based on the premise that an angry child is angry because they don't feel heard or understood.
Once they get into that rage stage, it's really hard to get them out. They seem to get "locked" into it somehow. Sometimes just waiting can be the best strategy but here are some calming phrases to try in the meantime.
Do you want a tissue? One or two?
Are you more hurt or angry?
Show me the spot where it hurts the most.
Just keep breathing until you can tell me how upset you are.
4...3...2...1...breathe.......4....3...2...1...breathe....(do it with them)
(you can learn this awesome conscious discipline technique here)
Show me (or tell me) how much it hurts
Show me (or tell me) how angry you are
Put your hands in here! (running water)
Push the wall.....harder.....HARDER!!
Would a drink of water help?
Let's go into the next room
Let's go outside
How much time do you need, 2 minutes or 5?
How serious is this problem?
All feelings are OK
Nanci J. Bradley is a child and family educator, author, energy facilitator, family aerobics instructor and all-around fun-loving person. She believes in the power of sleep, lifelong learning, healthy eating, fun, and more than anything else, PLAY! She studied early childhood education at Triton College and received her BA in education from Northern Illinois University in 1986. She received her MA in human development from Pacific Oaks College in 2011. She lives and teaches in Madison, WI.
Want more ideas about dealing with kids? Ask Nanci