Walk away for a few minutes if you feel like screaming yourself.
Your sister's child is always calm, cool and collected. Your little one wakes up in the morning screaming and doesn't stop until bedtime. Yikes! Some kids feel -- and express -- emotions more intensely than others. As kids mature, they usually learn to regulate those emotions. In the meantime, you're ready to pull your hair out. Try a few simple tricks to tame the screaming mimis.
1Set the example. You probably don't scream when you don't get your way, but some parents and families are just naturally louder and more boisterous than others. If you fall into that category, try to bring it down a notch and see what happens. Kids in a quiet, calm environment are usually more quiet and calm themselves.
2Intervene before frustration sets in. You probably have learned what situations are sure to send your child over the edge. Keep an eye out for trouble and stop the screaming before it starts. Serve lunch before your child is ravenously hungry. Put your little one down for a nap before she collapses in exhaustion. Offer a quiet activity if you see her getting wound up. Simply anticipating and taking care of needs promptly can head off most meltdowns.
3Don't overreact. Little ones love attention -- even if it's negative. Do you swoop in at the first cry or scold and yell yourself? If so, you might be training your child to keep up the screaming. Instead, pause for a minute. Stay calm, and say something like, "You're going to be okay. I can't understand you when you're screaming. As soon as you're quiet, I can help you." If the screaming continues, try walking away.
4Heap the praise on when your little one handles a problem without screaming. Kids love a little positive encouragement and you're showing her which behaviors are appropriate. Say something like, "You asked quietly for a snack instead of screaming. Great job!"