Posted in Behavior, Toddlers

Aggressive one year old


My 18 mo old started day care 3 weeks ago. Today his teacher told me at pick up that he’s aggressive to the other kids. Pushes them down, and sometimes hits. She says he’ll take their toys and throw them. She asked if I could be working with him at home while they work with him there to be gentle and kind. I guess I’m just sad. Nobody wants to have THAT kid. He’s one.... he does “understand” but to what level? We always talk about gentle hands when petting the dog and when he hits mom or dad, he knows what gentle is but apparently not at school. It’s just mom dad and toddler at home, I don’t believe he’s seen anyone ever being aggressive.... let alone hitting so I have to chalk it up to his temperament/personality at this point? Any suggestions on what I can do to help him? I don’t want him hurting others 😔

  • B
    May 09

    Get some books and put them in the rotation daily. Hands are not for hitting, etc

  • Lauren
    May 09

    OkAy - I totally hear you! I stay home with my 13 month old and took him to a park and he totally used his size to push over another child to use the same wall to hold! I do not believe in hitting and there is no way he saw that in our home ! He is very easy going and happy and loves watching older kids. But for some reason he knows he is strong and can get what he wants!! It’s so cute- but at the same terrifying! I don’t want the kid that is a bully!

  • Anonymous
    May 10

    I'm not staying you shouldn't correct the behavior, but that's pretty normal for his age. All you can do is correct his behavior when you see it, and show him things he can do to get his point across. My son is 3 and we still struggle with this, but it goes in phases, and his bad behavior now is related to jealousy , or retaliation after he tried to be nice. He is also very impressionable so if he sees other kids fighting then he will want to get in on the action. I would take him to places where other kids are, like the playground and just correct his behavior if you see him doing things. Even if they know it's wrong they will spend the next few years testing their boundaries and acting on impulse because remember he has only been on the planet a year and a half.

  • Jess
    May 10

    Was he like that before he started daycare? Sometimes your kid is just copying behavior he sees. They don’t have to accurately report every other kids behavior. You can have him watch videos on kindness and sharing. Or take him on more play dates and places with lots kids outside daycare to work on redirecting his behavior.

  • Jessica
    May 10

    He is very very young and it is a very normal thing for a child that age to do — I don’t think it means he has an aggressive personality in any way, he just doesn’t know how to handle his emotions yet. All the above suggestions are good and give him as much love and support as you can. It’s a phase he will overcome.

  • Anonymous
    May 10

    Jess- not really, but it’s just us at home so he isn’t around a whole lot of kids outside of daycare to where he could “be aggressive” towards.... so I don’t know :( yeah I think I’ll set up some play dates with kids to see for myself, and help direct him myself!

  • Maranda
    May 10

    My son is 20 months and he does the same thing. I’ve been told that it’s common around that age group 18-24 months. And then also picked up from other kids at daycare. I asked his pediatrician her opinion. And she told me that he may just need more challenging toys/things to do.

  • Jennifer
    May 13

    All kids do this at that age. It’s developmentally appropriate as it’s frustrating not having words. Some kids do it more than others.

  • Genai
    May 14

    My 19mo son hasn’t been around other kids a whole lot yet, but he really has no concept of sharing or taking turns. We’re working on being gentle, but even that is barely sinking in. In my opinion, this age is still too young to expect them to know how and how not to act with other kids. They’re not trying to be malicious. They are acting on impulse. Some toddlers are naturally more meek and others tend to be more “aggressive.” He just needs to be socialized and that will come with time. Try not to fret!