24 answers

6-Year-old Boy Wrestling Around

My son is always telling me that at school and at daycare that he and his friends are always wrestling and jumping on each other and knocking each other down. I asked him why he couldn't just be nice and play nicely. Wondering if that is a boy thing.

He is also very sassy and have to give him "the look" and he quits, but drives me crazy.

Anyone else?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Okay, I am finding out that they tend to play like that. I grew up in a home with a sister so having boys is totally foreign to me. I do kind of like that at least I won't have to play Barbies.

Featured Answers

I know you got a lot of responses already....but I couldn't resist.

My older brother has 3 boys...I have an only child girl...
He once tried to play with her. He felt awful for making her cry, but her beloved cuddle bunny doesn't wrestle or like to be "body slammed". It was hilarious to talk about it years later.

It is a proven fact...

In a controlled environment, observing the difference between little boys and little girls when given a new object....

Statistically, little boys are more likely to experiment with it like a little boy....can I bite it? Change the form? what kind of noise does it make when I bang it on the ground? and for some...how far can I throw it?....and many other more rough observations.

Little Girls want to see how it feels against their cheek, smell it, see if its cuddly, or relate it somehow to a pet or living being.

There are always exceptions...but statistically....you have a normal little Boy.

2 moms found this helpful

I realize I'm way later than others in responding but had to chime in ... this is a *HUGE* "boy thing". There are about 6 little boys in my son's first grade class, all of whom walk home after school. The moms and I sit at the playground and watch as they work out their collective energies by wrestling each other to the ground. Once in a while, one will start fussing because they've gotten on the bottom of the pile--but this is extremely typical boy stuff. My son also plays that way with his big sister, and although she's petite, she can definitely hold her own against the big boys.

1 mom found this helpful

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Hi L.-

I wanted to let you know about some fascinating research conducted by John Gottman, PhD, out in Seattle, Washington. He talks about the importance of this rough and tumble play; play that changes from second to second, play that is highly charged. This play (with appropriate limits in terms of not physically hurting someone) is excellent for your child, whether it be a boy or girl. This is because ( and there is research to support this)this is one excellent way children learn to be highly engaged and aroused and be able to self soothe and calm down when the play changes. It is practice in self regulation of physiological arousal. The wrestling play usually happens between dads and sons, but again, it can be done by moms to sons and daughters too. Read Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child (Gottman) for more detailed information. But the bottom line is practice this type of play at home with limits and your child will benefit emotionally. It's fascinating information!

2 moms found this helpful

I know you got a lot of responses already....but I couldn't resist.

My older brother has 3 boys...I have an only child girl...
He once tried to play with her. He felt awful for making her cry, but her beloved cuddle bunny doesn't wrestle or like to be "body slammed". It was hilarious to talk about it years later.

It is a proven fact...

In a controlled environment, observing the difference between little boys and little girls when given a new object....

Statistically, little boys are more likely to experiment with it like a little boy....can I bite it? Change the form? what kind of noise does it make when I bang it on the ground? and for some...how far can I throw it?....and many other more rough observations.

Little Girls want to see how it feels against their cheek, smell it, see if its cuddly, or relate it somehow to a pet or living being.

There are always exceptions...but statistically....you have a normal little Boy.

2 moms found this helpful

After being mom of three boys and daycare provider to five other ones, I CAN tell you that it is a boy thing. Also, like the men who catch the BIG fish and they get away, there's a good chance he exaggerates just how much beating up is going on at daycare and school. My boys are more physical than my girls far more but it's not out of meanness, it just ...is... My boys have played soccer and football and wrestling to give them a more directed outlet for their physical side. Not all boys are like this, but if he's not being reported by his provider or teachers, chances are it's not out-of-the-ordinary or hurting the boys he's with. I've learned over the years that sometimes, I have to bite my lip and not look, it hurts me more than it hurts them!!

2 moms found this helpful

If it is really bothering him and he or the other boy are getting hurt, I'd be concerned...but if it is regular boy roughhousing and wrestling I wouldn't be. I have determined that the wresting, etc that my husband, brother, brother in laws and nephews do is really how they show their affection! As soon as someone gets hurt, they are done, and it is never the purpose. I think many boys and guys don't always know how to say, I really love you and don't feel like giving a hug, so they laugh and throw them down to wrestle! I know it sounds strange to most of us!

1 mom found this helpful

My issue is that while this kind of play seems to be normal. It should not be allowed in school or daycare. That is harsh physical contact and sure enough someone will get hurt and it could be badly. BTW-You can die from being hit in the heart the wrong way at the wrong time so if I were you I would speak to the people in charge about the problem. Just a heads up.

1 mom found this helpful

yes it's a boy thing-last week at my son's soccer practice most of the boy's had to have a time out from the coach because they were wrestling and not playing soccer like they were suppose to. and my son is only five.

1 mom found this helpful

I have a two and a half year old little boy and he loves to just playfully wrestle and roll around with my husband or I. Boys are rough and tumble, it is just natural. We explain to him that he can play and "tackle" with Mommy and Daddy at home but it is not ok at school b/c he could accidentally hurt someone smaller than us. So far we have not had a problem. He cannot wait to come home and play football with us!!! Good luck

1 mom found this helpful

L.,
My son is first grade as well- And Yes, regardless of what others might say- the rough housing is boy play. I fully feel it it healthy although the school is having issues with it at times. I am now having to learn how to teach him boundaries. Our daycare allows the older boys to "dog pile" and rough house- away from the smaller ones of course, but that is not acceptable at school. It tends to be a little confusing for him I think, but he is getting the idea.

1 mom found this helpful

I realize I'm way later than others in responding but had to chime in ... this is a *HUGE* "boy thing". There are about 6 little boys in my son's first grade class, all of whom walk home after school. The moms and I sit at the playground and watch as they work out their collective energies by wrestling each other to the ground. Once in a while, one will start fussing because they've gotten on the bottom of the pile--but this is extremely typical boy stuff. My son also plays that way with his big sister, and although she's petite, she can definitely hold her own against the big boys.

1 mom found this helpful

pretty sure that this is just a boy thing my little brother is the same way!

I think you should put him in wrestling. I put my son in wrestling when he was in Kindergarten. This gives them an outlet in a proper place for such behavior. He is now in 3rd grade and heading into his 4th year of wrestling... he just loves it! And I love it too because believe it or not it teaches them discipline and respect. The season starts in November, we usually do the program that runs out of the high school, but there are also independent wrestling clubs as well.

My daughter is 2 1/2 years old and she wrestles around with her little cousin (who is also a girl) all of the time. She seems like a little bully because she's always knocking kids down, jumping on people, and wrestling (just like your son). So I've heard that the wrestling is more of a boy thing, but I would have to disagree with it. She can also be very sassy. But she has her moments when she is the sweetest little thing ever. I think it might just be a stage that kids go through.

Boy thing or not - this is not okay for school or daycare. I have seen many children get hurt and much time wasted disciplining children that are getting too rough. Our daycare teacher can barely get a work out or engage children in an activity without having to break up a "play fight" and there is PLENTY of free and outdoor time to expend energy. Children need limits. I have watched the boys tackle, take down and hurt each other so much I am now pulling my child out of this center where something constructive can go on. Children need limits and need to learn to use words to express their frustrations. If you want to allow this in your home and think your children are safe doing it - then so be it. But, don't subject my child, other children or a teacher trying to do her job to this ridiculously inappropriate behavior for school or daycare.

This is very normal. I know that it is probably driving you nuts but it will pass!!!!! Are you tired of hearing that comment? Keep you sense of hummor and call a halt if it gets to you too much. Since you work full time you must be tired when you get home and maybe that is entering into to situation also. This is a way for kids to get rid of some of their energy - remember when they get to be teenagers and want to sleep all the time you will look back at the jumping and noise wonder what happened to those days.

I taught in schools where there were only boys and I have a 10 year old grandson who tends to be that way. Boys do play differently that girls. They play fight, duel with sticks, race their bikes, and wrestle. I disagree that it should be promoted or tolerated if it gets too rough. The boy next door and my grandson do all the above but we stop them if it gets rough. We turn their attention to other things such as building tents. We ask that they use their manners and both are exptremely polite to both families. In the boys schools, only the out of control boys went over-board. We let them play soccer and games that worked out their aggression in a constructive way. It's funny there to that the roughest wouldn't play. I believe parents must redirect them and not allow these tendancies to take over. You'd be surprised to see one family stop these behaviors that the others will follow. Our kids are seeing abusive behavior on television and in video games. It should be stopped. Sometimes reading Bible stories and such can calm them down and I absolutely think that you should talk with the daycare and tell your son to stay out of it and stand on his own two feet not to participate. We tend to be a aggressive world. Who needs it?

L.,
You are correct in saying it's a boy thing. i have 3 boys 6,4 and 1 and yes, even at home they wrestle. I see my son when I drop him off at school and again when I pick him up knocking his friends down. It's crazy, and I have to tell him all the time that it's not nice. He's even taking to knocking down a little girl he likes. I think it's just something that they may never grow out because my hubby and his friends will get into "wrestling" matches to see who's tougher. GRR...I feel your pain...
M.

I am a little late in getting in on this one......but....it is only a 'boy' thing, if it is allowed. My brother did not do it and neither does my son. My son was assaulted at Scout Camp resulting in a traumatic brain injury and many said it was just 'boys being boys'.......ridiculous........male children are not genetically predisposed with no control where they HAVE to engage in the kind of activity where as many have said they get in trouble at school. Hitting, shoving etc is a learned behavior that can lead to some pretty awful stuff......my .02.......

Most definitely a boy thing.

It's all boy! I have three! However, my 6 year old gets into trouble for doing this at school. I allow it at home to a certain point but it does get out of control. My 6 year old also talks back. I just keep in mind that it will only get worse when he becomes a teenager!

Lord, yes, that's normal!!

I have 5, count 'em, 5, boys, and that's just the way they are. They are rough, tumble, very physical. My 6 year old has discovered his indendence, and is as sassy as can be. I think it's the age.

yes it is normal for boys to behave that way my 31yr hubby still dose it wiht his buddys from time to time so don't worry

this is how 6 year old boys have fun. It is perfectly normal and really wouldnt you rather have him wrestling and playing and jumping rather than sitting and watching tv or video games?

Definitly a boy thing! No worries. Very normal.

it's a boy thing. My boys do the same thing. Good luck. Oh and as for "The Look" I get it all the time.

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