How to handle children who make a fuss when they have to leave

2022.05.31

Many children have a hard time moving from one activity to another activity. Most parents have experienced when their 1 or 2 year-old throws a tantrum when they are told they need to leave the park or play area. In this article, we will give some tips on how parents can handle these situations.

公園遊びを切り上げられない! 気持ちの切り替えが苦手な子どもへの対処法

Why do children have difficulty stopping an activity?

Young children have not yet developed a sense of time and are often unable to control their emotions. Therefore, it is often difficult for them to stop an activity when they are told to.

How can parents help their child move on when told?

Gain perspective

It is often hard even for adults to stop a fun activity when they are in the middle of it. Children may panic if they are told suddenly to stop what they are doing. Therefore, it is important for adults to communicate with their children and help prepare them.

Below are some ways to prepare your child to make it easier for them to understand.

● [After you do it X more times it is time to go]
● [We will leave after I count to 10]
● [I will set the timer on my phone and when you hear the sound it is time to go]

If you let your child decide how many more times he/she will do the activity, it will be easier for him/her to agree. Also, when setting the timer on your phone, it is a good idea to try to choose a song/ring that your child likes.
It is also helpful if parents tell their child how long they have before they start playing. If necessary, you can use simple diagrams or pictures to help them understand. After some repetition, your child will begin to understand the concept of time.

Find a good time to communicate with your child

When children are playing enthusiastically, it is difficult for them to hear you. Try to find a time when they are not concentrating on their play, such as when they are observing a friend or looking up from the corner of their eye.

Listen to them and give reasons

When parents try to empathize with their child’s feelings, it helps them become less stubborn. It is also helpful when parents give their child reasons for having to stop what they are doing.

Let them know when it is time to go home clearly

Young children may have difficulty guessing what to do when you say, “It’s time to go home.
>By telling them specifically what you want them to do, such as “It’s time to go home, come here,” “Get in the stroller,” or “Let’s clean up,” it will be easier to get them to do what you want.

Prepare a reward

It is also effective for parents to reward their child when they stop playing when asked. By showing them that there is something good waiting for them when they listen, it will be easier for them to take action.

In this article, we introduced some actions parents can take to help their child learn how to stop playing when they are asked to. Children are not naturally good at stopping what they are doing when asked to. However, attending toddler classes where all children finish playing at the same time will encourage your child to finish playing and clean up quickly.

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