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Mina, Clinical Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 188
Experience:  Working as a Highly Specialist Clinical Psychologist in NHS. Experience in both children and adults
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We have two kids. One is 3 (Boy) the other 6 (Girl). The problem

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We have two kids. One is 3 (Boy) the other 6 (Girl). The problem relates to my little girl. She has a domineering personality always showing off, not quite knowing when to stop. I also have problems getting her to listen and this is effecting her school work. She is a clever little girl and seems to get 9/10 on average for mini tests in both english and maths at school but when assigned a worksheet or similar that involves working through something in class she starts messing about and is very easily distracted. The teacher has already suggested moving her down a group because of this, but she also feels that the work will be too easy for her in the lower group and I worry that it will give her more time to mess about. The class sizes are big at the school, 30 in a class and this leaves little time for the teacher to spend with the children individually. She also always gravitates towards the naughtly behaved kids at school or in clubs. I do sit with her at home and allocate time for her and I, to have some fun together doing puzzles or playdough etc but she tends to always want to be in charge and its quite off putting. Intrestingly she does seem to have a real shyness and kind of awkwardness to her at times and I wonder if she is putting on a show at times and kind of going along for the ride with these loud outgoing types that she seems to be attracted to. Does she maybe find it hard to fit in? Any tips please....PS: We had thought of sending her to a private school where the class sizes are smaller and they have additional specialist teachers.

Hello and thank you for contacting us.


It sounds like that your daughter is presenting with some mild behavioral problems which do not seem to be well handled at school. There are quite a few options that the teacher should try first instead of putting her in a lower group such as, bringing her to sit at the front to minimize distractions, not close to a window and if she would still be disruptive then certain measures should be in place such as withdrawal of rewards or benefits. Same at home, it sounds like you are applying a lot of good techniques, such as giving her attention. However, it also sounds like your parenting style may be a bit too permissive, allowing her to misbehave without having a structured system of rewards and withdrawals of rewards. So for example, it is good that she has the reward system but what about if she misbehaves?Also, you would need to look at your response when she misbehaves. Do you try and persuade her by talking to her to stop or do you withdraw your attention and limit e.g. play time or tv time?


There is a need for you to have a firm system and boundaries so she learns that misbehavior will cost her certain things. At the same time, she would need lots of positive attention when she behaves well (e.g. cuddles, positive talk). It is also very important that if there is another adult at home, you would both be consistent with this behavioral plan and both shared the same responses to her.


Hope this helps


Please feel free to share any feedback on these thoughts.


All the best



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Customer: replied 6 years ago.

If I am giving her an instruction, for example; calm down and sit up properly at the table.

How many times should I have to repeat that instruction before I put her on the naughty step or remove a marble from her jar?

Well, It would be best if you found a good time when she is behaving well and after complimenting her for her good behavior, to tell her that you will be asking her once when she misbehaves and if she does not listen then she will need to go to the naughty step or remove a reward. She would need some sort of preparation for this new technique. Your goal should be that she listens after once. If you stick to your plan and not give in then she will eventually realize that you mean what you say. You should really avoid asking her three times, two should be maximum trying to cutting it down to one time.


Hope this helps



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