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DD is 4 1/2. This has been the hardest age so far. The independence has sky-rocketed, the emotionality has sky-rocketed (and she's always was emotional), tantrums have increased, she's also become very cuddly/huggy (I like that change :) ).<br><br>
Being tired, has a HUGE, HUGE impact on dd, and many times with negative behavior it happens when she is tired. We also have a 4 1/2m old baby, but I don't believe all the behavior is connected to that change, it seems far, far more connected to the increase in independence, and in addition I've read of a number of other parents that have seen big changes during the 4 yr old age.<br><br><br>
I'm trying to determine how to best deal with it. So, let me give some situations....<br><br>
Situation #1.<br><br>
DD hit a relative out of anger and frustration.<br><br>
Situation #2.<br><br>
DD is acting out much more in class and not listening to her instructors (we don't do preschool, but I have her in class like swim or gymnastics)<br><br><br>
Situation #3.<br><br>
Something simple just snowballs. I ask her not to climb on the couch with her shoes on. She refuses to listen and does it again. I repeat the request, she refuses to listen. I ask her to sit on the steps, she refuses to listen and then throws something. I tell her we do not throw things, and ask her to go to her room to calm down. She freaks and starts yelling, and refuses to go. I help her go to her room, she hits me....<br>
anyway, you get the idea....<br><br>
The request to not climb up and over the side of the couch with her dirty shoes... this is something she'd normal not do, or would stop on the first request, BUT b/c she is tired, she acts out and things escalate. In this case, tiredness played a major part. She stopped all naps at 18m, so getting her to nap is not a solution...that day, she just got up an hour earlier than usual.<br><br><br>
Anyway, suggestions to get us through this period??<br><br>
Tammy
 

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My DD is 4.5 also and yup can totally relate. Right now we have VERY strong firm no 'second chances" boundries which has actually greatly reduced the tantrums. So like for example shes jumping on something with her shoes. I'll ask once for her to take off her shoes if she doesn't listen I physically (not roughly) stop her and we remove shoes its like she gets on hyper drive and unless I physically just say enough she just keeps going geting more wound up.<br>
Hitting and aggression she goes to her room again not as punishment but to honor that overstimulation life seems to be giving her. She can play in her own safe space for a bit, shes actually been having more "private" play lately so shes doing this even on her own. Mandatory quiet times are at an all time MUST right now. SHe also craves rountinues and our days right now are more suctructured.
 

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I think that a child who is tired is also a child who is regressed and acting more like a younger child.<br><br>
It might be useful to think of her as a 2 or 3 year old when she is acting out because she is tired, and intervene as you would with a younger child.<br><br>
So, for example, a 2 or 3 year old might not be able to hear and comply with the direction to remove shoes before jumping on the couch. So intervention mught look more like, "Looks like you want to jump on the couch! That sounds like fun. Here, let me help you remove your shoes so the couch doesn't get dirty."<br><br>
In a structured class, a 2-3 year old would have more difficulty paying attention and following the rules. They want to do what they want to do and rules are bothersome. For such a child, when they are having trouble following directions or are disruptive to the group, it might help to take a break out of the classroom to try to meet the needs they were trying to meet in the class ("Oh, it looks like you really want to run around right now. Lets go outside and run around together for a few minutes"). It also might be useful to re-evaluate whether the class is still working for her - maybe she needs a few months off, or maybe she would do better if the class were at a different time of day (such as in the morning when she is not so tired).
 
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