QuestionsCategory: Child DevelopmentMy child is biting other children at nursery
Professor J Cloth asked 5 years ago

My child has started biting other children at nursery and they keep informing me what can I do? Im not there? He doesn\’t do this at home

1 Answers
Jill Wheatcroft Staff answered 5 years ago

Hello Professor J Cloth,

Biting is quite common in toddlers and they usually grow out of it – phew! As this is happening in nursery and not at home I think the first step is to arrange to talk to your child’s key worker and try and help them identify the trigger or cause of the biting. There are lots of reasons why a child may bite, common ones are frustration at not being able to communicate or in some cases boredom. In these cases picture boards or baby signing can be useful or keeping your child busy.

If we are talking about a toddler then finding out when they are most likely to bite can be useful so staff can be ready to distract, hopefully having prevented any biting they can provide positive feedback or a reward to your child for being good at the end of the day.

You can support the nursery by sitting down and talking through with your child why biting is not a good idea or you could get a book which tells a story about a child that bites. Obviously keep it simple, make sure it is age appropriate,no psychology text books or Freud necessary:) Having said that, you do not want your child to think you only think of them as a ‘biter’!!! So give lots of praise where they do something thoughtful. Try not to worry, this is a very common phase and most children will stop once you identify the reasons and explain why they must not bite.

Learning a new behaviour takes time. Your toddler may bite again, so talk to the nursery staff about what you can do to support them and it can also helps to use the same words as they do for example No biting/ biting hurts as consistently as possible to emphasize the message.

Good luck!

Jill Wheatcroft

Riverside Cares and the Child Feeding Guide share the importance of establishing healthy eating habits early in life. Visit our websites to learn more about ‘Feeding Children Well’ events, evidence-based programmes, and tips for feeding children.


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