How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Rossi Your Own Question
Dr. Rossi
Dr. Rossi, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 4627
Experience:  PsyD, LPC, CHt
Type Your Mental Health Question Here...
Dr. Rossi is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My son Nicholas is 3 years old,..He willbe 4 in August. We

This answer was rated:

My son Nicholas is 3 years old,..He willbe 4 in August. We recently moved and placed Nicholas in a nearby child care schools. He has been disenrolled from two different schools in the last month. Nicholas has been going to child care since he was one year old. The reason that Nicholas has been disenrolled by these two schools is that Nicholas refuses tolisten to his teachers, He also has been throwing toys and also hitting his classmates and teachers. Nicholas does not act like this at home. He listens to me and never throws toys nor hit me. I tried speaking to him and asking him why is he behaving like this.. he would not answer. i tried punshing him. It would work for a little bit and then he would return to this misbevior. Now i hvae to find another care center to place himm but then he would have to go through the change of new teachers and new classmates. What do i do.. How can i help me son stop this behavior..

Good Evening,


There may be different things causing the behavior- anxiety, social discomfort, separation issues (especially if he is the only child) Something may be triggering this behavior specifically at school (possibly others bulling him, teaches not paying close attention to his needs/wants)


If you have not been told specifically by a teacher/staff at the day care what had initiated these behaviors, you may want to ask the to explicitly describe if something takes place before his behaviors start.


He may not be used to the routines at the day care and perhaps he is getting too tired and therefore acts out in frustration.


He is too young to be able to specifically rationalize his behavior. You may want to engage him in some pretend play at home with his toys (if you have some puppets or humanoid toys) and pretend that you're a peer at the day care. Ask what does he usually like to do/play with at the day care, do others share, does he have a good friend, etc. Then see how he interacts with the other humanoid toys. Tell him that you and him are just pretending it is a usual day at his day care and that you really want to see what they do and how he does it.


He may be also having low self esteem (depending on what events he is supposed to partake in at the day care) and if he senses that he's not performing as well gets angry and acts out instead. Behavioral is generally goal driven. His behavior may be attention seeking (even negative attention is some attention received)


You may also consult with a behavioral modification therapist who can use play therapy, narrative therapy and other hands on modalities to figure out and help him manage his anger.


A wonderful book to read to him-

A Volcano in My Tummy: Helping Children to Handle Anger by Eliane Whitehouse and Warwick Pudney (Paperback )

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
thank you, XXXXX XXXXX try to do more play puppets. now i have to re-enroll him in another school i just hope things work out and i will take your advise. any other suggestions that you help us thru this new school change again?..

If you are consequenting him at home for something he did at school that day, that may not be too effective. He is too young and consequences usually have to be immediate and short term (ex 5 min time out, if you take toys, he has to know how to earn then back probably by the next morning) Otherwise he may not grasp that his day care behavior is causing mommy to be upset at home.


My Kid is Acting Out and I'm About to Shout! (Audio CD - Mar. 4, 2008)

Dr. Rossi and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you

Related Mental Health Questions