How to deal with challenging behaviors in the children's area


Published on

2013 New Jersey Library Association Conference Presentation

Published in: Education, Self Improvement
1 Comment
  • very nice presentation. plz send me a copy at
    Are you sure you want to  Yes  No
    Your message goes here
No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

How to deal with challenging behaviors in the children's area

  1. 1. Conversation Starter:How to Deal with ChallengingBehaviors in the Childrens Area2013 NJLA Conference PresentationBy:Susanna ChanHead of Children’s ServicesSouth Brunswick Public Library110 Kingston LaneMonmouth Junction NJ 08852Phone: 732-329-4000 ext. 7285Email:
  2. 2. Tables of Contents• Why do Children Misbehave?• What Can We Do?• Undesirable Storytime Behaviors• Basic Rules for Storytime• Severe Challenging Behaviors inYoung Children• Unruly Teens/Tweens• Angry Parents/Caregivers• Links
  3. 3. Why do ChildrenMisbehave?Image from We goals ofmisbehavior inchildren:o Attention seekingo Power struggleo Revengeo Display of inadequacy
  4. 4. What Can We Do?• Focus on the issue• Dont take things personally• Master your own thoughts, feelingsand actions• Adhere to policies and procedures• Active listening• Respect
  5. 5. Undesirable StorytimeBehaviors• No participation, kids runningaround, parents are chatting etc.What can we do?o Clear guidelines of yourexpectations in the beginningo Re-examine storytime materials tomatch the audienceo Ask feedback from parents
  6. 6. Basic Rules for StorytimeSince our storytimes have become quite popular and are very full, please review some ofthese basic rules to help us keep the program smaller, quieter and more fun foreveryone. With your help, we can develop and nurture your child’s love of books andthe library more effectively.1. Please attend only one storytime program per day. Space is limited in our programsand we want to make sure everyone has a chance to attend.2. Please attend the program for your child’s age group. One year-olds should notattend the program for two year-olds, and vice versa.3. Please participate with your child! You will provide a model for your child by payingattention and directing your child’s attention to the stories, singing the songs andperforming the fingerplays. This is especially important if your child is a little bitshy.4. Please chat with friends after the program. Everyone has more fun if we all join in!Time will be available at the end of the program for socializing.5. Please keep your child on your lap or nearby. We expect young children to exploreand move around, but try to keep your child close so that they will not obstruct theview of others and you can help focus their attention.6. Please leave the program room if your child is restless or distracting. This helpseveryone to concentrate on the program. You are always welcome to step back inwhen your child quiets down.7. Please plan to arrive early. Young children are easily distracted and latecomersbecome the focus of attention.
  7. 7. Severe Challenging Behaviors inYoung ChildrenImage from “See that, Dad?”: from “”:
  8. 8. Severe Challenging Behaviors inYoung Children• Tantrums, aggressive behaviors etc.What can we do?o Make sure the child is safe and not hurtinghimself/herself or otherso Find out what caused the childs distresso Speak with the child in a calm and soothingtoneo Defuse the situation by distractiono Introduce parents to available resources ifneeded, e.g. Early Intervention
  9. 9. Unruly Teens/TweensImage from : from The Telegraph:
  10. 10. Unruly Teens/Tweens• Loud, disruptive, destructive or aggressivebehaviors etc.What can we do?o Keep calm and avoid power struggleso Speak to them with a friendly but firm toneo Respect. Do not humiliateo Tell them the librarys behavior policy and yourexpectationso If behavior continues, give them a warning andwarn them about the consequenceso Call the authorities if needed
  11. 11. Teens/Tweens with Positive Energy
  12. 12. Unruly Teens/Tweens (cont.)Other solutions:• Change negative behavior into positiveenergy, e.g. provide volunteeringopportunities, sense of belonging• Identify the pack leaders and try tobuild a positive relationship with them• Ask school authorities to visit thelibrary during problem hours toidentify the culprits• Use humor to diffuse tension
  13. 13. Angry Parents/CaregiversImage from “Before its”:• Complaints,demands, aggressivebehaviors etc.What can we do?• Listen• Apologize• Understand• Give• Help
  14. 14. Links:• PLA - Problem Situations, Not ProblemPatrons | Public Libraries Online• Library Behavior Policy• Library Behavior (Computer Use) Policy• Unattended Children’s policy• Ages and Stages of Youth Development FactSheet• Three Simple Steps to Great CustomerServiceThe End