Conflicts in Class
21 May, 2024

Conflicts in Class in Early Learning Childcare

Conflicts in Class: Byford Child Care offers Early Learning Childcare to Bedfordale and surrounds

Conflict is an unpleasant idea but unfortunately, it is a part of human life. This applies to children of even very young ages.

Conflicts in Class in Early Learning Childcare

In terms of the typical centre for early learning childcare, Bedfordale or elsewhere, well-established techniques will be in place to deal with Conflicts in Class if and when it arises.

Conflict Avoidance

It is exceedingly rare to find a preschool-aged child who sets out to create conflict with others simply for the pleasure of doing so. In almost all cases of conflict, it arises for a clear reason, even if it might seem trivial to an adult.

Fights over toys, games, sweeties or sometimes just in the course of normal play, can arise at almost any time and result in Conflicts in Class.

Our policy is first and foremost to create environments for play and learning that minimise the potential causes for squabbling. That usually means:

  • ensuring at all times that play is closely monitored (even if subtly!) and that potential causes of conflict are identified and removed before they cause trouble. An example of that might be several children suddenly deciding they all want the same toy at once, where a fast impromptu ‘sharing’ lesson can quickly defuse tensions;
  • immediate intervention and peacekeeping at the first sign of trouble flaring up between children. This often involves separation, ‘time outs’ and discussion with the children concerned.

Sometimes, fighting can arise for purely emotional reasons. That might involve the child who has simply become too excited during play and has crossed the line from excitement and effort into frustration and anger.

These causes are slightly harder to spot in advance because they can flare up in an instant but they are totally normal. Young children typically are still learning how to differentiate between their emotions and control them. They will, fairly frequently, make errors in that respect.

Once again, supervised play will usually ensure that any such incidents are quickly spotted and the angry child is given the time to calm down and be given a reassuring chat while cooling off.


The commonest causes of conflict in classes are those mentioned above – the difficulty in controlling emotions and learning to understand the concepts of both sharing with others and being patient while waiting for ‘their turn’.

There may be some other contributory factors from time to time:

  • having slightly older siblings at home meaning squabbles can be more commonplace;
  • some: forms of disorder or illness may be a factor. Examples might include ADHD though the patterns of behaviour tend to be different, with sufferers typically showing more regular and sustained outbursts than might typically be expected of children who have simply lost their temper over a given incident at a given time. Where this is suspected, the childcare centre will always highlight it to parents.

Dispelling myths

There are many reasons why significant numbers of children have a seeming predisposition to engage in squabbles and conflict, even at early ages.
Some are assumed to be genetic in their origin. Others are attributed to copycat behaviours from older siblings. Some argue this is related to normal survival-orientated instincts and the establishment of childhood ‘pecking’ orders.

Whatever the causes, this area also brings with it some mythology:

  • only boys fight: In fact, girls do fight – though even from young ages, this tendency seems to decline more rapidly than it does in boys;
  • a predisposition towards conflict in early learning centres means it will be carried forward into schooling: There is typically no correlation (excluding conditions such as ADHD). Very large numbers of children squabble at younger ages but for many, this declines and even disappears before they enter schooling;
  • fighting children should be left to work it out themselves: To the contrary, this is a very dangerous and old-fashioned philosophy. Children who, by process of adult indifference, think that fighting to the point of winning or losing is somehow ‘OK’ may have very great difficulties adapting to school and teenage life.

If you’d like to know more about our policies in this or other areas, why not call us for an appointment and discussion? We’d welcome the chance to hear your views and explain ours in more detail. We pride ourselves in providing great early learning child care services to Bedfordale and surrounds.

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