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Preventing Temper Tantrums the SuperNanny Way

We've all witnessed the ever explosive temper tantrum. You may have even felt as if you were having an out of body experience, as you tried to fight your embarrassment over the blood-curdling screams that emitted from your child's mouth in your favorite store. Whichever way you've experienced the tantrum, you may have only thought about ways to deal with this behavior after the fact. However, the SuperNanny tip on tantrums is to prevent the incident in the first place.

Terrible Tantrums

Whether your child is two or twelve, discipline shouldn't always be about fixing what went wrong, but rather how to prevent it in the first place. While you may not be able to prevent kids from ever having a tantrum, you can exercise some control over the frequency and intensity by utilizing some of the Supernanny tips for tantrums below.

Supernanny Tips for Tantrums

  • Identify the real issue. Maybe you've been dragging your child to five different stores for the last three hours or maybe they're tired or hungry; either one of these situations could cause children to act out. Make sure you look at all the angles of your child's behavior and whether or not they could have been suffering from an ailment. From there, you can work on controlling their behavior and preventing a tantrum in the future.
  • Offer choices. Give your child choices when it comes to simple things, as this will help them feel more in control. Instead of saying "Put your sneakers on right now," try saying "Would you rather put your sneakers on first or go get your coat?" Whichever one they choose doesn't really have a major effect, so why not give them the choice? Supernanny tips like choosing your battles save parents and kids from wasting precious energy.
  • Take advantage of tools like behavior charts, and list specific behaviors you want your child to work on so they know what's expected of them. Sometimes temper tantrums are an expression of frustration. Giving children some guidance about what behaviors are expected can help alleviate that frustration. Behavior charts can make doing this simple and track-able.
  • Have fun. When you want your child to do something that he/she often dislikes, turn it into a game. Instead of saying "Put away all your clothes," try, "I bet you could put away all your shirts before all of your pants." This will entice your child and they won't be focusing solely on the disliked activity.
  • Give a warning. Before you tell kids that they need to go into timeout, you should give them a warning. "Please sit down in your chair or else you will have to go to timeout." This way your child knows what to expect if they exhibit that behavior one more time. Important Supernanny tip: Follow through on all warnings.

Parental Calmness: the Most Important Behavior Tool

Most importantly, you should remember to stay calm during your child's temper tantrums. You can only do so much to help prevent tantrums and the rest is just a normal part of children growing up. Stay in control and patient during and after your child's tantrum. You should give them some breathing room and allow them to think about their behavior.