The Truth About Toddler Discipline

I personally try and approach toddler discipline in a completely different way. My husband and I do not expect our son to behave all the time. That is just not reality. However, some tantrums and bad behaviors can be prevented or else short lived.

If you pay attention to what your toddler may need you can understand why they potentially may be misbehaving. Is it passed their bed time and are they sleepy? Are they hungry? When did they eat last? Are they bored? Bad behavior can be a way that your child uses to communicate their needs to you.

I have put together a list of some reasons why your toddler may be acting out. I am not a doctor or licensed professional in toddler discipline. I am only passing on advice from my own personal situations. I can relate Moms, I have a 3 year old and have seen these very same situations too!!


  • Our pediatrician told me that a two year old requires about 12-13 hours of sleep a day. So this would include whether they have a nap during the day or not. If your toddler is not getting this amount of sleep, than they should be. This could be a major issue in bad behavior. As adults, we can get grumpy when we are tired. We can be irritable and quick tempered. The same can be for your child. Again, prevention is the key. We want to try and prevent bad behavior before it starts. If they are not on a schedule yet, than try putting them on one. Trust me, my son wasn’t on a schedule until he was three years old. So it’s never too late to start!!


  • This is an easy fix. Even a toddler on a schedule still may need some extra *healthy snacks* through out the day. My son has started acting out and before the tantrum got out of control I gave him some apples and he was fine. I just didn’t realize that he was hungry. I forgot about his snack or he may have eaten lunch early that day. I am not stating that you should “feed” bad behavior. You may have just overlooked the last time your toddler ate. We are Moms and Dads who are also human. Toddler discipline doesn’t have to be hard.


  • Some toddlers can get bored easily. I am a stay at home mom and I know that I try to keep my son active and busy. Try some toddler activities to help keep them stimulated. Also, try and enroll your child in preschool as soon as possible. My son started at 2 ½ years old. It was the best thing for him. He got to be with other children and he was exposed to a different environment. He loved to go to school. This also helped with the transition since I was home all the time with him. We want to keep them happy, loved and stimulated. Being bored can cause bad behavior.

Sometimes, you may have done all of these things and your toddler still has a tantrum. There is a time when toddler discipline is needed. Remember to stay calm and just walk away. From experience I know this all very well, my son could really throw some fits. You can also read my Christian Parenting page to help with discipline.

Getting upset will not do you or your toddler any good. Remain calm and do not feed into their tantrum. I have some great Time Out Rules if you’d like some tips. Just remember that whatever punishment you decide do it calmly and with love.

Reassure your child that you’d rather reward them for good behavior, than punishing them for bad behavior. ALWAYS tell your toddler they are a good child. I can’t say it enough, try and prevent bad behavior as much as possible. There is no guarantee but at least there was an effort.

Toddler discipline is one of those “gray” areas of parenting. To learn some other techniques on how to discipline your toddlers with love, check out Pawan's informative site. However, I discipline my son because I love him. I also know that it will add to the person he is and the man he will become. That is our jobs as parents, to teach them right from wrong.

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