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"Everyone has tantrums, just some are more vocal than others. When our children have a tantrum they are really trying to say they NEED something". 

Of course, prevention is the best medicine...watch for warning signs:

  • Fixating on one task to the point of frustration,
  • Chewing on non-edible items (shirt, fingers, etc.),
  • Saying they have a headache or belly ache,
  • Breathing fast,
  • Frustrated statements ("oh-oh", "it can't fit").

If you see any of the above occurring, ask, "Can I help?" or redirect them to another activity.

One method I learned to end a tantrum was the the HALT acronym. When you see your child gearing up for a tantrum calmly ask your child...

  • Are you Hungry? (pause)
  • Are you Angry? (pause)
  • Are you Lonely? (pause)
  • Are you Tired? (pause)

This serves two purposes:

  • It gives us a path to follow, once the need is identified let them help figure out ways to fix it.
  • I also learned that when children/adults have tantrums it's because they are stuck on the emotional side of their brain. This gets them to the logical side as soon as possible.

If the above doesn't work:

  • Ask them a question that they have to think about, or that's so absurd they really search their brain to find an answer.
  • Let them calm down. Guide them to a safe place to deescalate (bean bag chairs are great).
  • Give them more than a moment. Tantrums are exhausting for all involved, especially the child.

Below is additional information I found.

Articles on Temper Tantrums  

Coping with Temper Tantrums 

Dr. Greene speaks about Temper Tantrums

Healthy Kids' articles on Temper Tantrums

The Truth About Temper Tantrums

Tips for Surviving Temper Tantrums

Understanding Children's Temper Tantrums

What Works; Dealing with Temper Tantrums


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