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Four Major Causes of Misbehavior


September 23, 2014 by Arwen McGilvra

Recommended Reading: Four Major Causes of Misbehavior by John F. Yeaman

The site may look like it hasn’t been updated since the copyright date of 2003, but Yeaman offers up some very good advice on how to figure out what is causing the misbehavior.

When you think of the misbehavior of your child, remember that “misbehavior” is a word adults use–not children. What we call misbehavior may seem very different to your child. Children are naturally curious: they explore, they try, they test. This can develop into essential adult skills, though along the way be called misbehavior.

A stair step of causes
Studies of many children found four causes of misbehavior: a child seeking

– attention
– power
– excitement
– revenge

Fortunately, our own feelings often give us clues about which of these motivates a child. Those clues suggest actions most likely to help, though if they don’t work, we try others. Read More


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