If your toddler’s behavior is unpredictable and out of control, you’re not alone. Many parents struggle to know how to teach their toddlers how to listen well, have good manners, and be kind. But toddlers don’t have to stay terrors. Here are some strategies you can implement to help improve your toddler’s behavior.
Set Screen-Time Boundaries
Did you know one of the culprits of poor behavior in children in too much screen time? Studies have shown that kids who watch too much TV or play too many games on phones and iPads also tend to be more moody, irritable, unkind, and misbehaved in general. So if your child is exhibiting unwanted behaviors, consider curbing their screen time. Taking away all screens cold turkey might not be the best idea, but try cutting back 30 min each day. Depending on their age, an hour of screen time or less is a good goal to shoot for. Additionally, be sure to replace those screen hours with some fun activities, and your child will be much less likely to notice the change.
Serve Healthy Foods
The foods your child eats have a direct impact on their behavior. Foods that are high in sugar, artificial colors, or preservatives can make your little one hyper and, eventually, cranky. To prevent this and encourage good behavior, try incorporating more veggies, fruits, and protein into your child’s diet. Consider how you can make snacks and meals more healthy. A few small diet changes can have a tremendous impact on your child’s health and mood.
Teach Them Good Behavior
This might sound like common sense, but your child isn’t born knowing how to be kind, thoughtful, considerate, respectful, etc. These are life skills and character traits we as adults have to teach them and instill in them. So the next time your child is acting out at the grocery store or squabbling with a sibling, use it as a teaching moment. Explain to them why the way they are behaving is unacceptable. Also, help your child practice healthier alternatives. For example, if your toddler has a tendency to lash out when another child takes their toy, you can teach them how to take their grievance to an adult.