Discipline problems with five year old

Him telling you to die is just saying ‘screw you’ in Chinese. He doesn’t necessarily want you to die and disappear. :sunglasses:
Not surprised to find out his father is in China. Likely family troubles.

This is the reason why I avoid certain types of cram schools now. I would only try to find a school that has a close community with kids and teachers. I was in your position too many times and I despised their parents for letting their kids act this way in a school. At the same time, this wasn’t the kids’ fault.

Instead of punishing, I did my best to reach out to the child and try to interact with him/her and understand the background of that child’s family, tendency, and root of the behavioral issue. In the class, I gave more attention to these kids and gave them more time to shine, and reinforced them that they are doing well, as well as when they needed to improve. I’ve seen kids who have been isolated come alive in my class because of this.

The problem with cram school is that you don’t have enough time or resources to connect to the kids and fix the issue. In the end, it’s up to their parents and community to fix these children. The cumulative efforts between the teachers, school, family, and community are what these kids ultimately require.

My 02, FWIW.

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The worst child I ever had also had a father working in China. He was so happy when his father came back to Taiwan but so sad when his father left again. He was very moody and positively defiant.

He was also one of the sweetest kids so you knew that he was just hurting sometimes. I never solved his problems. The only thing I could do was to make it known that his behavior was unacceptable and he either needed to change his behavior or face some small consequence. If you make the consequence to large you won’t be able to add further consequences. Also, you might trigger his defiant attitude if something seems unjust to him. Make sure he knows that his choices have consequences and that if he doesn’t like it he needs to change the way he acts.

Kids like these make it impossible to set rigid rules and to treat everyone equally. He is a very needy child that clearly has some issues that he needs to deal with. Just treat him with kindness and show him what you expect.

Good Luck.


Thank you so much for your reply. I have honestly found it the most helpful and everything you said about your student matches mine. So far, small consequences have seemed to work. I think it’s great that you care so deeply for your students.

I know what it’s like dealing with a child like that. When I was in Canada I also dealt with a 5-year-old who was much worse than this one here in Taiwan. He was so bad that he used to damage the hand held percussion instruments, and he also used to attack other kids. I have heard him lash out with extremely bad tempers using the f-bomb and one day he went beyond extreme in the library that he threw Lego bocks all over the place. (After that I cleaned up the place and the secretary said to leave it).
The following school year I was there, his behavior was improved. And I knew the reason why. His father was the main cause of the aggression in his behavior, but after his father passed away, the boy’s behavior improved.

So for your situation with this 5-year-old kid, it’s not as bad as the one I dealt with in Canada. In fact I did deal with a kid in grade 3 last year who had this problem. The main cause of his behavior is mainly from the parents in his home who encourage such learned behavior.