Parenting TIps

Calming the Storm: 5 Effective Strategies for Handling Your Child’s Tantrums in Public

  • 4 August 2023

Has it happened to you? You are in a shopping mall or in a public place and you asked your kid not to do something and he or she began to throw tantrums. They scream, cry, shout and everyone’s staring at you, and you have no idea what to do next?

Don’t worry as parents, these mortifying experiences are common. We experience the same tantrums when they are at school as well. As per research by UNICEF temper tantrums are considered a normal part of a child’s behaviour from 1.5 to 5 years of age. They may occur once a day and last typically from 5-10 minutes. We at Oakridge International School Visakhapatnam are committed to supporting parents in navigating the complexities of parenthood, including dealing with public tantrums. Here are five tips that can help you handle them and teach them self-control.

1. Prepare Yourself:

Kids can get cranky at any point and throw tantrums. It’s not exactly predictable. But if you observe closely, there are some things that irk them most. If you’re prepared and aware of their trigger points, controlling their tantrums can actually be a piece of cake.

So, identify their trigger points and try to avoid them. Keep distractions handy, like games or toys, to keep their minds engaged.

Here are some best practice methods suggested by UNICEF for dealing with temper tantrum episodes:

2. Talk to Your Child:

A lot of times we don’t realise that kids are curious about what’s happening. They want to know what to expect. If your child is playing with a friend or a toy and you’re in a hurry, don’t rush in and grab them. Instead, approach them earlier and explain that you need to leave soon because you have to be somewhere. This not only gives your child the time to process the information but also is an easy way to avoid tantrums.

If they deny going with you try to know the reason why they don’t want to come and comfort them so that they make up their mind to join you. Moreover, this is a great technique to teach your child self-control.

3. Set Behavioural Expectations:

You should always set behavioural expectations. Talk about your plans and what behaviour you expect from them. Having clear guidelines will help them understand what’s acceptable and what’s not. Avoid threatening them to be on their best behaviour as this will lead to other well-being problems. If you’re going to the grocery store, you could explain to them that there will be toys and they can look at them, but you won’t be buying any. This way you’ve already established what is about to happen.

4. Use Positive Reinforcement:

Praise your child when they demonstrate good behaviour and self-control, both during and after a tantrum. Positive reinforcement can encourage them to manage their emotions better in the future.

5. Keep Calm:

This is probably the most important tip for parents. If despite all your efforts, your child still throws a tantrum, which is very possible, the best thing you can do is to stay calm. Easier said than done? Well, it’s hard but practice makes perfect. Even though you might be fuming inside, don’t show that on your child. Take a deep breath and remind yourself that this behaviour is typical for their age. Stay composed, avoid raising your voice, and resist reacting emotionally.

If possible, move your child to a quieter and less crowded area to minimize distractions. Sometimes, a change of environment can help your child calm down and regain control of their emotions. Avoid giving in to their demands to end the tantrum, as this might reinforce the behaviour.

The above five tips provided insights into empowering parents to handle such situations. As parents, we play a crucial role in shaping our children’s emotional intelligence, and by remaining patient, understanding, and supportive, we can raise confident, well-adjusted individuals. Oakridge International School Visakhapatnam is dedicated to partnering with parents on this journey, providing resources and support to create a nurturing and empowering environment for children’s growth and development. Together, we can embrace the challenges of parenthood and build a foundation for our children’s bright and promising future.