Guiding Children’s Challenging Behaviors

The guidance procedures that are in place in my center are mainly focused on teachers’ responses to children’s challenging behaviors. For example, if a child engages in inappropriate behavior, including physical aggression, teachers are expected to respond respectfully and calmly and explain what behavior is acceptable and what is not. If the child cannot restore control over his or her actions, teachers may send this child to a “safe place” for not more than five minutes. It is a quiet spot under the teacher’s observation where the child can calm down and relax. These procedures work because children are informed about teachers’ expectations and learn to understand and talk about their emotions through conversations with educators. Therefore, one can conclude that the teacher has a positive relationship with children in the classroom. Children feel welcome to share their emotions with the teacher, and the teacher is always willing to help any child in the classroom.

In the center, there are specific rules established to guide children’s behavior in various environments, such as at the playground or during mealtime. For example, some rules for the playground include patiently waiting in line to use playground equipment and never touching anyone climbing the equipment. The consequences for misbehaviors include a verbal notice from the teacher, and if the misbehavior continues after this, then the timeout is used. It means that the child engaged in misconduct is sent to an observed “safe place” where the child can calm down before resuming playful activities.

The teacher consistently follows the rules and consequences since no child is exempted from consequences for misbehavior, and consequences always follow the misconduct. The teacher also makes sure that children know and understand the rules. This is often done playfully: for example, the teacher may ask the children to show their understanding of the playground rules by drawing pictures of appropriate behaviors. The main preventative measure to ensure that children engage in appropriate actions with others and materials is observing children and intervening before the misbehavior happens.

The most difficult part of the day for children is transitions. Transitions in the center are conducted so that all the children are involved in doing the same thing, for example, washing their hands or putting on clothes for going outside. This time is difficult for the children because they have to stop doing what is engaging them and sometimes wait for a long time before their peers complete the required activities. I would suggest that the teacher warn the children about the oncoming transition. For example, the teacher may announce to the children that, in five minutes, they will need to go and wash their hands to prepare for mealtime. Furthermore, the teacher can send children to perform a specific transition activity in groups instead of distracting all children from their play at once. The most difficult part of the day for teachers is the outdoor time. This is because of safety concerns, limited space, and children’s getting dirty. To alleviate this challenge, I would suggest that the teacher should develop clear rules for outside activities together with children to ensure safety and make the most out of the limited space. In addition, the teacher may offer children to use tools, such as toy shovels, to help them keep their hands clean.

Even under stress, the teacher is required to handle children calmly and respectfully. Educators should be able to recognize their personal feelings and understand that the child does not try to “push their buttons” on purpose (“Reflecting on our reactions,” 2015). In my center, teachers use support from their colleagues to avoid responding too emotionally to children’s misbehavior. They may ask their colleagues to observe the kids for some time while they take a time out.

The activities for social-emotional development include the teacher’s reading books to children, singing, and playing various group games. The teacher helps children make friends by using sharing activities and encouraging them to help their peers. Further, the utilized activities that develop children’s social skills include story time, conversations, group games, and dramatic plays.


Reflecting on our reactions and responses to children’s behavior. (2015). Eastern Connecticut State University. Web.

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PsychologyWriting. (2023) 'Guiding Children’s Challenging Behaviors'. 25 January.


PsychologyWriting. 2023. "Guiding Children’s Challenging Behaviors." January 25, 2023.

1. PsychologyWriting. "Guiding Children’s Challenging Behaviors." January 25, 2023.


PsychologyWriting. "Guiding Children’s Challenging Behaviors." January 25, 2023.