Challenging Childhood Behaviors: And what to do about them

Finding the core need and motivation behind your child's fits and fights
Free tutorial
Rating: 4.7 out of 5 (97 ratings)
1,616 students
37min of on-demand video
English [Auto]

Identify the four motivations (needs) behind most childhood challenging behaviors
Identify which motivation your child most often exhibits
Recognize the reasons for this behavior and determine what your child is trying to tell you through it
Create a plan for modifying the child's behavior by meeting the need being expressed


  • This course is for both experienced and new caregivers- Anyone struggling with the challenging behaviors of a child they care for. There is no minimum or maximum age for the learner or the child you care for.


Children do not act up just to drive us crazy- even if that's how it seems. Their behavior is communicating an underlying need that they feel isn't being met in that moment.

Every child desires to feel loved and accepted- like they belong. However, these feelings are gained in different ways for different children. Some feel loved when they get attention, while others feel they belong when they are in charge. There are children who focus on fairness, feeling like they aren't loved when things aren't equal. And there are those who have a fear of failure, thinking they won't be loved if they don't do something well.

This course will go through the four main motivations behind childhood challenging behaviors- attention, power, fairness, and fear- discuss the underlying needs, and then provide steps for how to meet the need and modify the challenging behavior.

At the end of this course, you should have a better understanding of why your child behaves the way they do, and what to do about it.

This course is taught by Erin Hinton, director and teacher at James Marshall Parent Nursery School in West Sacramento, CA. Her 13 years in the early education classroom and 21 years raising children do not make her an expert, but they do provide a unique blend of practical knowledge and book smarts that allow her to pass on the wisdom and understanding of young children that she has gained over that time.

Who this course is for:

  • The information in this course is designed to support anyone spending time with children- parents, grandparents, foster parents, early education and care workers, nannies- ANYONE!


Erin Hinton
  • 4.6 Instructor Rating
  • 221 Reviews
  • 3,425 Students
  • 5 Courses

By day, I am a preschool teacher. By night, I am an adult educator. Both of these roles have come together in my position as program director and teacher at a parent cooperative preschool in West Sacramento, CA. I have a Masters Degree in Education, 13 years of teaching experience, and 21 years of life in the trenches, raising children. I believe what the research proves- that a child's most important development happens in the first five years. I also believe it is the highest achievement to be a life-long learner. Parents and early caregivers are the child's first teachers, and as such need support and encouragement as they navigate both the joys and challenges of working with children. No one is an island, and no one is truly alone.

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