Better Ways to Handle Aggression
“The squeaky wheel always gets the oil!” is no more true than in the school setting. One of the squeakiest wheels is the child with anger and aggression issues.
In 4th grade I had a classmate that would get so mad he would open his desk, place his head inside, slam the desktop down on his head and refuse to come out. On calmer days he would just take everything out of his desk and throw it on the floor.
I can’t even recall how many times I would walk by the office and see him waiting for the principal because he hit some kid on the playground.
Anger and aggression are somewhat more difficult to deal with in a classroom situation because many of these kids don’t have or qualify for any type of special services. They’re average intelligence, have no real learning issues and when calm do not have presenting social or emotional issues.
Unfortunately when a child with anger and aggression issues blows up the typical way to deal with the issue is to suspend the child or, if these aggression incidents are cumulative, he is expelled.
Often parents are aware of their child’s anger and aggression issue, but do not have the knowledge and skills to help the child learn more appropriate ways to express anger and frustration. This is also true with classroom teachers, counselors, coaches, day care workers and other adults who work closely with children.
There are many quality resources available to help adults work more effectively with kids who have anger and aggression issues.
- The website “Empowering Parents” has a good article http://www.empoweringparents.com/Aggressive-Child-Behavior-You-Can-Learn-to-Manage-It.php and is a good resource.
- “Kid Power” is another site with quality articles like this one: http://www.kidpower.org/library/article/7-strategies-for-managing-aggressive-behavior-in-young-children/
- There are also many quality resources out there for teachers and a great resource is schoolmentalhealth.org. Check out this great article: http://www.schoolmentalhealth.org/Resources/Educ/TeachersStrategies%20to%20Deal%20with%20Aggressive%20Children%207.29.08.pdf
- Earlychildhoodnews.com is another great site to expand on understanding aggression in young children. http://www.earlychildhoodnews.com/earlychildhood/article_view.aspx?ArticleID=594
Sometimes it’s just nice to hear what others have had to deal with when it comes to angry and aggressive kids so I’d like to hear about your child anger and aggression stories. The more we share, stay informed and stay involved the better chance we have of helping children control and overcome such issues.