4 year old hitting classmates

Cc - posted on 03/11/2014 ( 2 moms have responded )

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Over the past few weeks, my son's day care teacher has been reporting more incidents than usual. He used to only hit kids who were bothering or bullying him or his friends. The teachers reported that he's been "loose with his hands" lately and has been hitting more. I wasn't too worried because I figured it was just a phase or that maybe the other kids were hitting each other and he just joined in. Then I found out he threw a block at one of his friend's head and the boy went home with a huge knot on his head. The day after that, he threw sand in another friend's clothes...so much that the teacher had to undress the boy and clean him up. Another time, he bit a boy's finger. Yesterday, I got a call while I was at work letting me know that he slapped a boy in the face hard enough that the teacher felt she had to call me. Today when I picked him up, same story. He slapped the same boy in the face.
I've talked to him about why it's not fair to hit his friends. Anytime I've asked him why he did it, it usually had to do with someone not sharing with him or "bothering him." Yesterday and today I took away television and computer games. It didn't seem to bother him at all. The teachers are asking me to "talk to him." I have...didn't work...what can I do to get through to my four year old?

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Cc - posted on 03/13/2014

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Thanks Isabella. I decided I'm going to try to use positive reinforcement. I feel like punishment doesn't affect him. I've tried time outs...he just talks to himself, sings to himself, doesn't seem bothered at all. I've taken toys away...he just finds other things to play with. I've taken away TV & computer games...he entertains himself in other ways. I've sent him to bed early...same as time-out, he sings talks to himself, kicks the bed, talks to me the whole time... I guess it's a good thing that he turns negatives into positives for himself, but frustrating for me.
After I met with the teacher yesterday, and she shared that he hit another child with a block...I decided to try positive reinforcement. I told him that if he lasts a whole week without hitting any friends, I would give him something. The teachers and I will praise him when he handles a situation well.

Isabella - posted on 03/11/2014

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I have had this problem. I used lost of priviliages which you have done by taking his things. I also took a white sheet of paper used a yellow highlight and wrote for him to trace over a I am Sorry note to who he hit. The primary ways I teach good behavior is:
Time out
Writing - I will respect or I am sorry -
Cleaning the floor or stairs with a paper towel or sponge (I will give a area that he is responsible for cleaning)
Taking Toys
Will have to learn something new...sight spelling words, adding...work on something academic.
I hope this helps.

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